Hiroshima/Hida Takayama appeal

Starting from this Sunday’s showdown with Tokyo Verdy, FC Gifu’s next three home games will a chance for fans to donate to charities supporting the clean up/rescue/rebuilding operations in Hiroshima and Takayama.

In Hiroshima, a catastrophic amount of rainfall caused landslides in which over 60 people are thought to have perished – with more still unaccounted for. In Takayama, Gifu Prefecture, bridges and roads were washed away, crops destroyed & and houses flooded. While the loss of life wasn’t nearly as severe as in Hiroshima, places in Takayama still require help.

I’m sure lots of money will be raised and sent to people/charities that desperately need it.

FC Gifu “LINE” starts

LINE, the social networking/messaging service which has taken Japan by storm, now has another official account: FC Gifu

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The account has been set up to directly inform supporters about upcoming events & news, as well being a useful tool to keep people directly informed about match conditions. For example this month’s game against Ehime FC, where typhoon level rains & strong wind threatened the fixture, would have been a useful time to have LINE because it goes directly to the phone, as opposed to Twitter/Facebook where users have to actively check it.

And, it is another arm to FC Gifu’s burgeoning use of social networks. One which could prove popular with fans.

Avispa Fukuoka 1-0 FC Gifu

Another game against Fukuoka, another game where we should have got something out of it, but another game where Fukuoka took all three points.

FC Gifu starting XI: Kawaguchi, Abe, Kitani, Nakamura, Masuyama, Mori, Henik, Mizuno, Takachi, Endo, Nazarit

Gifu got off to the worst possible start when they fell behind after only three minutes. A very well worked corner routine left striker Takeshi Kanamori in space. His first shot was blocked, but he made no mistake with his second attempt, steering his shot into the bottom corner past Kawaguchi.

It is very rare that Gifu don’t score, but it wasn’t for the lack of chances in this game. Junki Endo should have done better when Taisuke Mizuno’s brilliant cross found him at the far post, but he put his shot wide. Nazarit was next up, but after outpacing the Fukuoka defence he too put his shot wide of the target while at the other other end Gifu were grateful when Nakahara put a very score-able chance over the bar.

Gifu continued to create chances in the second half, with Nazarit at the fore again. Avispa defenders were finding it difficult to cope with the big Colombian’s pace but he couldn’t convert either of two chances from the left edge of the penalty area.

Avispa could have gone two nil up but Daisuke Sakata’s chip over Kawaguchi, which came after Gifu carelessly gave possession away in a dangerous area, went just wide of the post. Avispa goalkeeper Kamiyama came to his sides rescue in the final stages when he got a vital hand on a Nazarit cross, a cross which would have left Ryoto Higa with a tap in.

But, alas, Gifu couldn’t find a goal and Avispa held on for the win. As with the reverse fixture earlier this season, Gifu did more than enough to claim a draw but a lack of composure in front of goal cost them. But the attacking performance overall was good: Avispa are no mugs and have some good players. They’ll be in or around the fringes of the play-offs but Gifu matched them in both games. As long as the chances still get created, then Gifu won’t draw many more blanks this year.

Sometimes (although it always seems to be against Avispa!) these games happen. Let’s hope to get back on track when Gifu welcome Yasutoshi Miura’s Tokyo Verdy at the Nagaragawa next week.

  • To get a detailed view from the Avispa Fukuoka side, visit the always excellent Avispa Eigo site

(only the Avispa goal highlight has been uploaded to Youtube, I’ll update when full highlights become available)

Ruy Ramos “Ice bucket challenge”

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last month or so, you’ll know that the ALS Ice bucket challenge has taken the football world by storm. Its as simple as it sounds, you merely pour a bucket of ice over your head.

It is all in aid of raising awareness of the disease called ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), commonly referred to as Motor Neurone Disease (MND) in my native England. The disease is a degenerative disease which affects the muscles, ostensibly not allowing the nerves in the muscles to work – meaning they waste away and die. When this starts to happen across the body, it can take the form of impaired speech, possible paralysis, difficulty swallowing and, ultimately, death.

The real kicker of this disease that is that, on the whole, it doesn’t affect brain power or mental capacity. This means that you’ll probably still have all your wits about you while your body gradually wastes away, which is a horrible thought. Any light shed on this disease, and any money that is raised can only be a good thing. (Which is basically what has happened with me. I knew little about the disease before, but I’ve looked it up and studied a bit about – so now I’m more clued up about it than I was)

ALS/MND information:

So, without further ado, here is Ruy Ramos taking the ice bucket challenge.

 

Avispa Fukuoka v FC Gifu

Team news: Gifu have some injury concerns with Tokihisa, Mio & Inoue already ruled out. Keiji Takachi came off injured last week, and Alessandro Santos is still receiving treatment for injury. Arata Sugiyama is still not at full fitness. But they do have a double injection of Yusuke available to them – Mori & Sudo – who have signed recently.

For Avispa, striker Daisuke Ishizu, who scored the late winner in the reverse fixture, has left for Vissel Kobe and so won’t be a factor this time around. Korean defender Lee Kwang Seon is suspended (again!) after picking up his eighth booking of the season last time out against Nagasaki.

My predicted FC Gifu starting XI: Kawaguchi, Abe, Kitani, Nakamura, Miyazawa, Henik, Kiyomoto, Endo, Nazarit

FACTS & STATS

Top scorers:

  • FC Gifu: Nazarit 13, Hiroaki Namba 9
  • Avispa Fukuoka: Hisashi Jogo 7

Recent meetings in Fukuoka:

  • 2009: Avispa Fukuoka 0-1 FC Gifu
  • 2010: Avispa Fukuoka 0-2 FC Gifu
  • 2012: Avispa Fukuoka 0-0 FC Gifu
  • 2013: Avispa Fukuoka 2-1 FC Gifu

Overall J.League record:

  • Gifu wins – 3
  • Fukuoka wins – 8
  • Draws – 2

Match details:

  • J.League division 2, matchday 28: Avispa Fukuoka v FC Gifu
  • Venue: Level 5 Stadium, Fukuoka. KO 6pm
  • Broadcast: Live on Skapa premium service
  • Weather: Cloudy, 40% chance of rain, high of 30°C

No-rin goods revealed

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The game on August 31st, when FC Gifu host Tokyo Verdy, is “No-rin day” at the Nagaragawa Stadium. As gone over in a previous blog post, No-rin is an agricultural anime (if you can imagine that) set in Gifu prefecture.

For this game, there will new, limited No-rin goods available to buy. See below:

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The football X agriculture T-shirt.

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From top left:

  • Special poster. Price: ¥500
  • T-shirt. Price ¥3000
  • Towel scarf. Price ¥2000
  • Stickers. Price ¥1000

Just looking at the post from the official site, there are loads of events taking place on the day – all seemingly designed to promote the local agriculture/countryside communities in Gifu and surrounding areas. There will be more information as and when, but in the meantime let’s hope for good weather on the day!!