The big match preview: Yokohama SCC v Fujieda MYFC

Japan Football League matchday 5 sees Fujieda make the two hundred mile round trip to the Kanagawa prefecture to take on Yokohama Sports and Culture Club. It is of course still early in the season but Saturday’s match sees Yokohama looking to stop the rot after three consecutive losses, whilst MYFC will be looking to make it another three points.

The away will go into the game at the, wonderfully named,  NHK Spring Mitsuzawa Stadium with nothing to fear. Two wins in a row sees the side aim for their first three game winning streak since the end of last September and it would be only the second time they have achieved this feat in the JFL – if they were to do so. Wins away to Mio and at home to Sagawa Printing have ensured that it is possible going into this game.

MYFC’s lineup is likely to be unchanged after another great win last time out but player/manager Toshihide Saito, could be tempted to give debuts to new signings Williams and Araujo. Both players are still young so it may be too early for them but Saito may place them on the bench in order for the Brazilians to gain experience. However, it will be hard for Williams to break into Fujieda’s defence after back to back clean sheets and Araujo has a tough job on his hand’s for the centre midfield spots with the expereience duo of Toshiya Ishii and Hiroyuki Ishida currently occupying those spots.

If the side is unchanged then it will see Kerlon in midfielder and Takahisa Nishiyama up front. This tactic worked last week with the Brazilian grabbing his first goal of the season and Nishiyama putting a decent shift up front alongside Alan, who definitely would like to his tally of 1 goal so far this year.

Fujieda’s opponents are named Yokohama Sports and Culture Club but there has been nothing cultured about the side so far this season with just one win and three losses. Their fans will be expecting better after their 6th place finish last year but like MYFC, this is only the club’s second season in the JFL.

The season started well for YSCC, with a 2-1 home win over HOYO Oito, however they have just one win themselves this year. After that game though, three loss have followed. First a 3-2 loss to Zweigen Kanazawa then two consecutive 2-0 losses to 2nd placed Blaublitz Akita and then Sony Sendai. It has left the side in 15th place and without a goal in their last two matches.

Although, it is no surprise they are struggling for goals after last season’s top scorer, Masao Tsuji, left for Gainare Tottori in J2 after an incredible 20 goals in 26 league matches last season. The forward even scored four goals in one match last year in a 6-1 win over Tochigi Uva. However, the side still have last year’s second top scorer Sho Aota who scored 10 last year so he will be one to watch for Fujieda as the striker has proven he can score goals despite none in his four starts this year.

Yokohama are unlikely to pull any tactical surprises tomorrow, as the side had nine players who have started every match so far and a further two who have played in all games so far. Although, the side could be tempted to give a JFL debut to Japanese-born Egyptian striker, Osama Elsamni. The forward has made just one substitute appearance for YSCC in last year’s Emperor’s Cup but has experience in the Czech Republic’s top division with FK Templice.

The game kicks off on the 6th April at 1pm Japan time or 5am UK time. A win for Fujieda could see them into the top 2 of the JFL depending on other results but a win for Yokohama could see them fully kick start their season.

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