Oita Trinita vs FC Gifu

This is only the fifth game of the season, but it is a basement battle with Oita being the only team ranked lower in the table than Gifu.

Current form

FC Gifu

  • Fagiano Okayama (A) – L
  • Kamatamare Sanuki (H) – W
  • Tokushima Vortis (A) – L
  • Zweigen Kanazawa (H) – L


  • Oita Trinita
  • Kamatamare Sanuki (A) – L
  • Fagiano Okayama (H) – L
  • ThespaKusatsu Gunma (A) – D
  • Jubilo Iwata (A) – L

These two teams have endured tough starts to the year and have, interestingly, both played Kamatamare Sanuki & Okayama.

FC Gifu information


For FC Gifu, it is hard to see a scenario where Ruy Ramos doesn’t change something or some people. No-one should feel safe in the line-up. I have a feeling that some of the older players will be rested and some of the new signings & younger players will be given a chance.


The following is not what I think the team will be, but what I would hope is being considered:


Masuyama   Abe   Takagi   Fuji

Mizuno   Henik

Rodrigo   Takachi   Endo


I think with the pace that Ryo Nagai brings for Oita, some pace at the back is necessary, and that’s why I’d like Masanori Abe in there. Some of the burden needs to be lifted from Keiji Takachi because it seems like all of Gifu’s creativity has to come through him – if he has an off day, Gifu can’t win. I’m a big fan of Taisuke Mizuno and hope he’ll get a chance. It could also be a good time to give Rodrigo his first start.


Oita Trinita information

Oita have picked up just one point, that point coming in Gunma, but they were unlucky against Jubilo Iwata on Sunday – they had chances to win but were undone by two superb goals.

They reacted to the slow start by bringing in Cerezo Osaka forward Ryo Nagai on loan, and he looked very lively on his debut (and had a goal wrongly disallowed for offside). The signing of Nagai and the continued settling in of Evandro should ensure that Oita don’t stay at the bottom for long.

The game is a 7pm KO at the Oita Bank Dome

Post match comments

This is what Ruy Ramos & Yoshikatu Kawaguchi had to say about the defeat against Zweigen Kanazawa.

FC Gifu coach Ruy Ramos

  • Kanazawa started the game better and got into their rhythm quicker than us, especially for the first 20 minutes. After that it was a bit more even, we had a good spell and then they would have a good spell. In the second half I wanted to try a tactical change by dropping Takachi deeper but it didn’t work. The worst thing for us today is that we didn’t win any second balls. By trying to make us more compact I hoped that we would be able to win more second balls, but we didn’t. Not at all.

Goalkeeper Yoshikatsu Kawaguchi


  • They (Kanazawa) were able to play the game they wanted to play.  They showed well and fought well. Their first goal came from a counter-attack, and after that we somehow couldn’t find our balance again and kind of lost our composure. When they scored first, our heads went down – and you struggle to get back into games when your heads are down.

FC Gifu 0-2 Zweigen Kanazawa


FC Gifu put in a dismal performance as they were beaten by last year’s J3 champions Zweigen Kanazawa at a rainy Nagaragawa Memorial centre.


FC Gifu starting XI: Kawaguchi, Masuyama, Fukaya, Takagi, Fuji, Miyazawa, Henik, Takachi, Kiyomoto, Leo Mineiro, Namba

The match started off in an entertaining fashion, the visitors forcing a couple of early corners and free-kicks, while Hiroaki Namba was looking in the mood for Gifu. Brazilian midfielder Henik picked up a booking in the 17th minute for persistent fouling and was quite lucky not to receive a second yellow when hammered the ball into the stand out of frustration.


Masashi Miyazawa sent a half volley just wide and Takumi Kiyomoto couldn’t quite properly connect with a Masuyama cross, but Gifu didn’t really make Zweigen ‘keeper Harada work in the first period.

Gifu brought on Ryutaro Karube & Rodrigo at half time, but they were powerless to prevent Kanazawa from taking the lead just two minutes into the half. A swift counter attack from the visitors ended with Kazuhiro Sato placing a shot just out of the reach of Yoshikatsu Kawaguchi to put them 1-0 up. Gifu were trying to get back into the game, but Zweigen were mostly in control and they sewed the game up in the 70th minute, albeit from a very debatable penalty.

Henik was adjudged to have brought down a Zweigen player in the box. When I saw it live I didn’t think it was a penalty and having seen it again on TV I’m convinced it wasn’t. Anyway, it was given and Shohei Kiyohara needed no second invitation to put Zweigen 2-0 up and seal the game.


Gifu brought on Junki Endo to try and find some spark, but at that point it wasn’t going to make much difference as Kanazawa were cruising, and could have added to their tally.

So, after four games FC Gifu sit second bottom and travel to bottom placed Oita on Wednesday night before welcoming title favourites Cerezo Osaka next weekend. It is still early in the season but Gifu can’t afford to let too many more games slip away from them. It is going to be a tough week, but the team need to be tough on themselves in training this week. A response is needed.

3/29 – FC Gifu vs Zweigen Kanazawa

FC Gifu will look to pick up their second win of the season when they host J2 new boys Zweigen Kanazawa on Sunday afternoon.


FC Gifu condition

Gifu come into this game on the back of a defeat in Tokushima last week, a game in which despite the paucity of chances, Gifu probably deserved a point. That’s not to say the performance was great, it wasn’t.

Rodrigo came off the bench to make his debut last week and if he hasn’t experienced any setbacks he looks set to make his full debut this week. I’m not sure who he’ll replace; my guess would be Takumi Kiyomoto but Kiyo showed some good signs last week. I think the starting XI will look something like this:


Masuyama   Takagi   Fukaya   Fuji

Henik   Miyazawa

Rodrigo   Takachi   Leo Mineiro


Zweigen Kanazawa information & condition

The J3 champions have the same record as Gifu having won 1 and lost 2 of their opening games. The win came via an impressive home display against Tokyo Verdy, but they couldn’t follow that up the next week as they slipped to a 2-1 home defeat by Yokohama FC.

Kanazawa look dangerous at times going forward with Shohei Kiyohara pulling the strings and Shoma Mizunaga leading the line. They’ve looked susceptible to good set piece deliveries, and so if Gifu dead-ball specialist Keiji Takachi is on his game there could be some joy to be had by the tall FC Gifu players.

Expect Zweigen to line up in a 4-4-2 formation, but the personnel is still a bit of an unknown as coach Morishita does like to switch players around – namely Kazuhiro Sato (sometimes wide left, sometimes wide right, sometimes in the hole) and Shinji Tsujio (sometimes right back, sometimes right midfielder, sometimes right winger).


It is forecast to rain in Gifu on Sunday unfortunately (as i write this on Saturday it is an absolutely beautiful day) but it probably won’t have an effect on the game – but it will definitely affect the potential crowd. Hopefully Gifu a win to get them in the mood for the week that lies ahead – a long trip to Oita, and then the small matter of Diego Forlan and Cerezo Osaka next Sunday.

The 1pm kick-off will also be broadcast live on Skapa & local TV station Gifu-chan.

Sunday attractions

Fancy getting your hands on, or indeed in, one these freebies? Well, it/they could be yours if you head to Nagaragawa Memorial Centre on Sunday afternoon for FC Gifu vs Zweigen Kanazawa.

These are part of the “Gifu bus thanks match” promotion, and apparently they will be free for the first 10,000 people to come through the gates. “The first 10,000″ seems pretty ambitious because I’m not sure if 10,000 spectators will come but you never know. And Gifu’s PR department are not afraid to think big. Also part of the thanks match are these funky little bottles:
Apparently there 2,000 of these to give away but you have to travel to the game by Gifu bus to get one.
Probably more famous than Gifu city itself is the rural town of Takayama, famous for its beautiful scenery and old town. FC Gifu are hosting a Takayama tourist booth where people can try food made with nationally renowned Takayama rice:
Dango (little rice balls cooked over a grill)
Grilled mochi rice stick
As usual, the food court will be the place to be before the game, loads of brilliant food to be had. It’ll be nice weather as well – get down there!!

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