FC Gifu will be looking to build on their fine win in Iwata last week when they host unpredictable Gunma this evening.
FC Gifu Recent form:
- 6/21 – Jubilo Iwata 2-3 FC Gifu
- 6/14 – FC Gifu 0-1 Consadole Sapporo
- 6/6 – Yokohama FC 3-2 FC Gifu
- 5/31 – FC Gifu 1-1 Mito Hollyhock
Gifu will be without the suspended Naoya Okane who picked up his fourth booking of the year last weekend. My guess is that Masanori Abe will replace him in the centre of defence with Tsukasa Masuyama moving to right back. further forward, I don’t expect any changes and I expect the blossoming forward partnership of 11 goal leading scorer Hiroaki Namba & Leo Mineiro to cause Gunma’s defence lots of problems. I suspect that Ruy Ramos is willing to sacrifice some defensive stability in order to keep Yuto Ono in the starting line-up. Kazumichi Takagi was supreme last week, and while Gunma don’t have the individual talent that Iwata did, he will again have to be at the top of his game to marshal the Gifu defence.
Thespakusatsu Gunma recent form:
- 6/21 – Thespakusatsu Gunma 0-1 Mito Hollyhock
- 6/14 – Thespakusatsu Gunma 1-1 Fagiano Okayama
- 6/6 – Tochigi SC 5-1 Thespakusatsu Gunma
- 5/31 – Thespakusatsu Gunma 2-0 JEF United
The visitors have blown hot and cold this year. Their two most recent victories have come against promotion chasing Jubilo Iwata & JEF United, but they’ve lost two of their last three with the defeats coming against Tochigi SC and Mito Hollyhock. Gunma’s man in form is young winger Ataru Esaka, their top scorer with 5 goals this year. They will look to rely on the experience of wily veterans Yuichiro Nagai and Yuki Matsushita to guide them along.
FC Gifu are actually unbeaten in the last five games against today’s opponents, and really should have done the double over them last year, but a Ryuichi Hirashige injury time equalizer secured a 2-2 draw in Gunma last season.
- FC Gifu 1-0 Thespakusatsu Gunma
- Thespakusatsu Gunma 2-2 FC Gifu
This game is a “free admission” game for Gifu residents, and the weather is going to be fine so hopefully a large crowd will come down and see an FC Gifu win.