Monday, 26 January 2009

Davi Touches Down in...

... Nagoya.

Despite some wild speculation that Davi might be off to Olympiakos in Greece, the 300 million yen signing arrived at Centrair (Central Japan International Airport) earlier today.

After his physical, Davi and our other transfer acquisition Hayuma Tanaka are expected to be introduced to the media at a press conference on Friday (30th).

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Tamada and Honda Called Up for Bahrain Game

Grampus striker Keiji Tamada and former Grampus midfielder Keisuke Honda have been called up for Japan's Asian Qualifier against Bahrain on January 28th. No place for defender Shohei Abe this time, which may be a good thing since he needs to recharge his batteries for the new season.

Honda is having a good season in the Dutch second division, having scored 10 goals so far this season. (If my Dutch is OK. Of course, I may have doubled things, if it isn't.:-)) He will also have benefitted from having a slightly less intense season. This should see him looking more refreshed than he has for the last couple of years, when has was playing in every Grampus and Japan U-23 game, and the occasional national team game.

Friday, 16 January 2009

Sato and Japan U-20s Qualify for 1/4 Final Berth

Nagoya Grampus defender Masaya Sato, in Dubai with the Japan U-20s for the Qatar International Youth Football Tournament, sees the team qualify for a quarter-final place. They will face Uzbekistan on Saturday.

Masaya has yet to play, but is gaining valuable international experience, that is likely so stand the team in good stead for the upcoming ACL and J1 campaign.

Aussies Already Counting Chickens

The typically one-eyed Aussie press are already expecting an all Aussie play-off between the Central Coast Mariners and the Newcastle Jets. Softies Grampus and Frontale, not to mention the two Korean teams (Pohang and Ulsan) may hurl a spanner or two into these carefully laid plans. :-)
Central Coast Sun

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Tentative Squad for 2009

Here is the Nagoya Grampus squad for 2009, as of 12 January. I have added shirt numbers for some players, but only those that have been announced (Maya Yoshida) or are unlikely to change.
(15 Jan Update: Kazuto Tsuyuki was sent on loan to Tokushima Vortis, leaving a squad of 30 players.)

Pos. No. Name
GK   1    Seigo Narazaki
GK   21   Koji Nishimura
GK   30   Koichi Hirono
GK   31   Toru Hasegawa
DF   3    Milos Bajalica
DF   4    Maya Yoshida
DF   6    Shohei Abe
DF   5    Takahiro Masukawa
DF   2    Akira Takeuchi
DF   23   Genta Matsuo
DF   26   Masaya Sato
DF 32 Hayuma Tanaka
MF   7    Naoshi Nakamura
MF   8   Magnum
MF   13   Kei Yamaguchi
MF   14   Keiji Yoshimura
MF   10   Yoshizumi Ogawa
MF   27   Sho Hanai
MF   28   Taishi Taguchi
MF   20   Yoshiki Hiraki
MF   22   Koji Hashimoto
MF   24   Shinta Fukushima
MF   33   Ryota Isomura
FW   9    Davi
FW 11 Keiji Tamada
FW   17   Yuki Maki
FW   19   Keita Sugimoto
FW   18   Tomohiro Tsuda
FW   25   Oribe Niigawa
FW   29   Hikaru Kuba

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Grampus Sign Hayuma Tanaka

Nagoya have signed Yokohama Marinos defender/midfielder Hayuma Tanaka. This has been a long rumoured move, and sees the team strengthen one of its weaknesses. Tanaka is an established right back, who can cross accurately.

This transfer should mean that Akira Takeuchi, who filled the right back position last year, moves to a different position. Since he has played in central defense, it would allow Stojkovic to rotate central defenders, while employing some in more advanced positions. Of the possible central defenders available (Maya Yoshida, Milos Bajalica, Takahiro Masukawa, Takeuchi), both Takeuch and Yoshida should be able to hold their own in a defensive midfield role.

This leaves the left back position as the main vulnerability for next year. As mentioned in an earlier entry, Shohei Abe has established himself in this position, but is likely to miss several games due to Japan national team commitments. Some cover for his position ought to be a high priority for the team.

Grampus Draw Newcastle Jets in ACL

Nagoya Grampus were drawn in Group E for the Asian Champion League. This pits them against Newcastle Jets from Australia, Beijing Guoan from China and Ulsan Hyundai from South Korea. Their first match is on 11 March.

The other J-League teams are drawn in Groups F, G and H.
Group F
Gamba Osaka
FC Seoul (South Korea)
Sriwijaya (Indonesia)
Shandong Luneng (China)

Group G
Kashima Antlers
Shanghai Shenhua (China)
Suwon Bluewings (South Korea)
ACL Play-off Winner

Group H
Kawasaki Frontale
Central Coast Mariners (Australia)
Tianjin Teda (China)
Pohang Steelers (South Korea)

The AFC has a good rundown on draw.

Other views on he draw:
Aussie 442 / The Age