During FC Gifu’s 2016 “kick off ceremony”, coach Ruy Ramos, entering his third year as manager of the club, had this to say about the upcoming season:

“I’m thinking back to when I was first approached about taking this job. I remember what the team & club was like. It looked like a challenge, but I’ve never run away from a challenge in my life. I felt a good vibe about the project, and that’s why I decided to join.

It has been difficult, no doubt. When I arrived, the club wasn’t as professional as it should have been. I said to (majority financial backer) Mr. Fujisawa ‘Give me three years to try and turn this club around’. Last year was tough, but I want to give it another go this year. I’ve felt that I’ve been able to learn & grow doing this job.

Now that we have our own clubhouse, I can spend a lot of time there. Working with the players, looking at opposition. We want to improve. I wanted to get results last year for (outgoing president Satoshi) Onda, but we couldn’t. That was a weight on my shoulders, but it is something I’m determined to put right this year. I believe we can, especially given the nature & quality of new players we’ve been able to bring in.

It is good to get good players from other clubs, even though we, as a club, finished in a disappointing position last year. I’m particularly happy to get Leonardo Rocha from Brazil. Also, getting Tanaka (Junichi Paulo) & Tatsuya Tanaka made me happy. Veteran players such as (Yoshinari) Takagi & (Masaru) Akiba probably had the chance to go to better clubs, so I’m obviously delighted that they chose to come here. Wellington Rocha brings a lot of experience……..really, I wish I could say a bit about everybody!

I’m thrilled that (Keiji) Takachi is back for another year. I believe in this group of players, and believe that we can progress and make people want to come to the stadium and support us. That’s my message to the supporters and people of Gifu – come here, watch us, support us.”