Team Manager Tsuyoshi Otsuki – Press Conference after the Match against FC Tokyo  

Comment from Team Manager Tsuyoshi Otsuki after the Meiji Yasuda J1 League 29th Sec Match against FC Tokyo【MATCH PARTNER Rhythm Watch Co., Ltd.】

We had prepared ourselves to do well in the match and we wanted to surpass FC Tokyo. However, we lost a goal during the first half of the match. Considering how we lost the goal, I wanted our team to express themselves a little more to handle that type of situations better.

Questions and Answers

Q: The team seemed to have played more aggressively compared to the previous match. What was the reason for selecting Kashiwagi as a starting member for the midfield anchor position? Can you also tell us what was the contributing factor for the team to play more aggressively today?

A: As for the question of Kashiwagi, considering how FC Tokyo plays, I thought it would be effective to have him in the middle to handle the ball by taking and passing it on. As for the second question, having three days between matches rather than only two made a significant change in our performance. Having some fresh players playing in the match also must have helped.

Q: We saw Kashiwagi play in the middle during the training camp and earlier in the year in February. However, he was mainly playing in the side half position after the season resumed. But, he assumed the position of midfield anchor during the latest two matches. What was your reason for assigning him into that position?

A: Kashiwagi wasn’t able to improve his condition fully before the season resumed on the 4th of July. As such, he played in a match for a short period of time and then spent time off the pitch for a while. He was repeating this cycle for some time. However, his condition has recently improved enough to the point where he can play as a starting member. That was the first reason. The second reason was how we play as a team against our opponent teams. Since our opponent teams’ guard was tighter today as well as in the previous match against Yokohama FC, Kashiwagi was placed in the middle position from the second half of the season.

Q: I thought the team’s performance surpassed your opponent team in some aspects today. What do you think of this?

A: I told the team before the match started that how we would do would depend on many things such as how our opponent takes the ball away from us and how the chief referee makes calls. We came determined to outdo our opponent in every aspect of the match including those points I have just mentioned. On top of this, we needed to generate enough energy to make sure we nailed the opportunities we created in front of the goal. We had the situation where we were in the penalty area with the ball. However, we couldn’t make the most of the situation and that impacted on our performance in the second half of the match.

As for the content of the match, our players obviously try hard to execute what they have worked on and challenge themselves to do and I feel some of those efforts are starting to show some positive results. It is a pity that those positive results are not translated into a good match result. While we admit our wrong doings, we shouldn’t overlook what we are doing right in order to do better in our next match.

[Urawa Reds Official Media (URD: OM)]

Team Manager Tsuyoshi Otsuki – Press Conference after the Match against FC Tokyo