Fagiano Okayama v FC Gifu

We are ready for Kick-off!!!!

FC Gifu open their 2015 Meiji Yasuda Seimei J2 League campaign down in Momotaro country as they head west to face Fagiano Okayama.

My predicted FC Gifu starting XI

Kawaguchi

Masuyama     Fukaya (c)   Takagi    Fuji

Henik       Miyazawa

Rodrigo          Takachi           Kiyomoto

Namba

I expect Gifu to line up in a 4-2-3-1 formation, just like they did against Nagoya Grampus in the pre-season game. Rodrigo & Kiyo looked sharp on the flanks in that game and the double pivot of Henik & Miyazawa should shield the back four quite well.

Gifu’s key man:

Henik. The man-mountain of a midfielder will be crucial to Gifu’s performance this year. He is athletic and strong, but has a tendency to get booked pretty often which leads to a nervous feeling that he could get sent off pretty easily. Him and Miyazawa (or Mizuno/Karube) will provide the base so that the attacking players can do their thing.

Last years results:

  • Fagiano Okayama 2-1 FC Gifu
  • FC Gifu 2-2 Fagiano Okayama

The game in Gifu was an absolute beauty of a game. Gifu were all over the place as Okayama took a 2-0 lead, but a Nazarit header just before half time gave hope. The second half saw Gifu put in their best (in my opinion) 45 minutes of the season. They were rampant. Naza missed a penalty before before deservedly getting the equalizer. Both sides pushed for a winner, but it finished level.

In Okayama, Stipe Plazibat hit the post before Fagiano went 2-0 up. Hiroaki Namba pulled a goal back 10 minutes form the end but they couldn’t find a leveler.

Any connections?

  • Yes. Fagiano count ex-FC Gifu star Kazuki Someya amongst their number, although he wasn’t really able to make much of an impression last year. Fagiano also have the talented Yuki Oshitani, a forward that spent time on loan in Gifu three years ago.

Key player for Fagiano:

  • It has been an off season of change in Okayama, but one thing that will remain the same is Yuki Oshitani providing their attacking threat. He’s small, but he is very sharp in around defenders and Fukaya & Takagi can’t afford to give him much space to work in otherwise he will punish Gifu.

 

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