Team Manager Tsuyoshi Otsuki – Press Conference after the Match against Kashima Antlers  

Comment from Team Manager Tsuyoshi Otsuki after the Meiji Yasuda J1 League 4th Sec Match against Kashima Antlers

We were able to win our first home match played with our fans and supporters back again in the stadium today. Although there are still many points that we can improve, it was rewarding that we achieved a positive result today.

Questions and Answers

Q: Do you think the applause the team received from their fans and supporters as well as the good atmosphere they created in the stadium boosted the team’s performance today?

A: Absolutely. Our fans and supporters applauded and bolstered us when we did a good job as well as when we needed to pull out a good performance today. The stadium atmosphere was different from what it used to be. Nonetheless, their timely applause revived our players’ good spirits and helped them to gain good momentum today. I am so grateful for such support. I really appreciate them.

Q: Your team has been doing great by gaining 10 points since the opening match. Having said that, I didn’t think the team was able to make attacks against the opponent in a calm manner today.

A: We knew what we wanted to achieve today. However, as I also told the team during half time, there were times when our players failed to be in the right spot and to follow up the decisions made by teammates in a more coordinated manner. I think these were the reasons why our team didn’t do as well today.

Our players also started to lose stamina in the second half of the match, which I believe caused some difficulties for our players as you have described. Thanks to the substitute players who joined the match later, our team was able to gain some strength back. Nonetheless, I would like to work with the team to better deal with those challenges such as good positioning as well as good ball handling. Since the match we played today was the third match we have played over a short period of time, our team members were losing their physical strength. I want to see our players better control their fitness levels to move forward.

Q: You mentioned on Friday that you regarded the past “three matches as one set”. Having played the this set now, do you see something that needs to be followed up in the upcoming matches for the rest of the season?

A: What I think about most is that our team will not be able to get through if we only rely on those players who played in the last three matches. During the previous match against Vegalta Sendai, one of our substitute players pressed our opponent and scored a goal towards the end of the match. As for today’s match, Éverton who played as a starting member for the first time scored a goal. In this way, not only the eighteen players who were with me today but also our other players must work together to prepare for the next three matches. I strongly feel that this is what our team must continue to do. This is what I have learnt from the last three matches our team played.

[Urawa Reds Official Media (URD: OM)]

Team Manager Tsuyoshi Otsuki – Press Conference after the Match against Kashima Antlers