S-Pulse 0-2 G. Osaka
--------------------------------- Lucas 14
--------------------------------- Jae-Jin 70
MF M. Yamamoto
Fujimoto on for M. Yamamoto (61)
Nagai on for Hara (70)
Nagasawa on for Paulo (78)
We lost and we fully deserved to. How long ago our top-of-the-table exploits seem now! Down to sixth, but incredibly we've still lost only the joint least in the league. 3rd is now impossible, 4th is going to be a mission, but we're in the quarter final of the cup which is more than can be said for most other teams, so at least we have that.
Kenta was forced into replacing Johnsen who picked up a knock in training, but the dropping of Kaito in goal for Nishibe had me scratching my head before kick off. One dodgy game against Reysol and the keeper is dropped. This is after an excellent season which resulted in a national team call up recently. A keeper's confidence is paramount, so why knock Kaito's even further? He's clearly the best keeper we have. Nishibe didn't have a terrible game, but he was all over the place on the second goal. To get beaten to a cross by an attacker is poor.
Well, the season nears an end, and the best we can hope for is fourth. Again. I think without any silverware between now and the end of next year Kenta Hasegawa will be looking for another team. I dearly hope he proves us wrong, because I like him, I really do. But football is about winning things, and we've been coming up short time and again the last four years.
There were a couple of crazy results this weekend which make our recent rubbish form not quite so hard to take. Kawasaki losing to bottom of the table Oita (ex-Pulser Fernandinho netting the only goal) and FC Tokyo losing to already-relegated JEF both go to show that we're not totally unique in our ability to pull shockers like the ones against Oita and Reysol.
With a bit of unfortunate timing, it was this weekend, after four defeats in a row, that the season ticket renewal forms were sent out. Not that it really makes any difference of course. Thousands upon thousands will be signing up for another year, and you know why? Because this is for life. Through the good times and the bad, WE ARE SHIMIZU S-PULSE, and we're bloody proud of that fact. :)
Awesome home support as usual.