Team Manager Tsuyoshi Otsuki – Press Conference after the Match against Kashiwa Reysol  

Comment from Team Manager Tsuyoshi Otsuki after the Meiji Yasuda J1 League 22nd Sec Match against Kashiwa Reysol

I had the impression that Kashiwa Reysol and Urawa Reds played a good match today. Both teams had good matchups in front of the goals as well as hard battles in the middles. We had good side changes and had each other off balance in the center. We had a good game.

Since our team created great chances during the first half of the match, it would have been good had we been able to nail those chances to get ahead of our opponent. Nonetheless, our players worked really well. They expressed themselves well including the corrections they made after half time. As this was the case, it would have been great had our team been able to gain three points by winning the match.

Having said that, given that our opponent team has several powerful players who do well in front of the goal area including making good counter kicks, we could have been defeated by them. As we had managed to avoid this situation today, I would like to keep our good performance going in the next match.

Questions and Answers

Q: Thanks to Martinus putting himself on the line, your team was able to make the equalizer from the corner kick today. What do you think of Martinus’s performance in both offensive and defensive?

A: Martinus was traded to Urawa Reds in the year I first became the Team Manager of Urawa Reds. This season marks his third year with our team. As for this season, Martinus has been very forthcoming from early on since our training camp and he has been showing a great attitude in trying to make a good contribution to the team. He was performing well before the J. League was closed due to the COVID-19 concern. This hadn’t changed after the J. League reopened on the 4th of July as he kept performing well following a long break. Though he sustained a little injury and was not able to play in matches for a while, he was keeping his good attitude alive. He wasn’t quite consistent in his good performance in the past, but he is continuously performing well now. This reflects his good development. He is showing us that he can still develop further and show great performance at the age of 29.

I want to see his good efforts to translated into tangibles results and assistance. Since his efforts led to the corner kick from which our team was able to score a goal today, I am very pleased with the outcome. As for today’s match, I was able to see positive attitudes not only from Martinus but also from other players as well.

Q: Your opponent team changed their formation to be a three-back system towards the end of the match. It seemed as though your team were not united in their response to the new formation.
A: We were prepared to play against their 5-3-2 formation. When the system changed to a wide 5-4-1 formation, we were also prepared to respond to that formation by having Martinus move to left. When we were trying to make attacks from the back with this positioning, some space was created as if our players were “slacking off” although my word choice here is not quite right. Some space was also created in the middle when Ugajin moved forward lengthways, to which space I had planned Shibato to move in to fill the void.

In the end, both teams played a more open style match. As it is easier to make more scoring opportunities in an open match, it was acceptable. I wasn’t too concerned about our team’s organization but rather hoping that our individual players’ performance such as Martinus’s speed and Leonardo’s skill would produce some good breakthrough for the team.

Q: It looks like the individual strength of your team players and what the team is trying to achieve as a whole have started to complement each other really well over the past few matches. What do you think about this?

A: Since things depend on the opponent team we play against; it is difficult for me to say what you pointed out is always the case. But, it is true that we recognize this type of development. It is pleasing to see more of such a situation happening during our matches. I always ask our players what their specialty is and ask them to complement each other’s strength. For example, Yuruki’s strength would be best extracted when he is placed left and Sekine who is not here with us today would get his best out in the way he understands it. I always ask our team members to gain good understanding of their own strengths so that they are passed on to the team to complement each other. It is gratifying if you were able to see this in our team.

[Urawa Reds Official Media (URD: OM)]

Team Manager Tsuyoshi Otsuki – Press Conference after the Match against Kashiwa Reysol