Below is a summary of Coach Tsuyoshi Oiwa’s press conference the day before the game.
●Director Tsuyoshi Oiwa
“We are happy to be able to play against a strong country like Argentina, and it will be a valuable opportunity for the people of Shizuoka Prefecture to get to know our team.We want to prepare well and make it a good game.”
──A match will be held behind closed doors on the 21st. How should players be used differently in the two games?
“We have not clearly thought about using players for the two games. We have been preparing for this one game over the past few days. We will think about how to allocate time through substitutions each time. I want to use it meaningfully in my activities.”
–What kind of attitude do you want your players to display?
“Of course we want to show what we have accumulated, but there are also players who are participating in this activity for the first time.Personally, I want to see them fully understand the concept and show off their own characteristics and strengths.As a team, , have a common sense of aggressiveness to steal the ball and where and how to go to steal it, then dominate the ball and dominate the space. That’s the kind of game I want to play.”
──Mahiro Hosoya, who was called up to the A national team, played an active role. How do Coach Oiwa and the players view this?
“The players are definitely inspired. It’s not just Hosoya, there are several players from our age group. I just want to be inspired by that and move towards tomorrow’s Argentina with this group. What we need to do as a team is different.The path to the future of Samurai Blue is to show what we have done as a group while being fully stimulated.We must work with a common understanding and develop such players. I want it to increase.”
──In Hosoya’s absence, Yutaro Oda and Shio Fukuda are candidates for the top spot on this team. Are there any expectations for the attacking team?
“Oda has the strength to play in a variety of positions. Shio Fukuda will be working with this group for the first time, so he will make him aware of the group’s tasks. I want to make his goals clear and give him chances. Oda has also scored points in this group. He understands the tasks in offense and defense. I don’t expect him to play in place of Hosoya. I want to show off my strengths and score points.”
──Do you feel a sense of locality by playing matches at IAI Stadium Nihondaira?
“It’s difficult (lol). It’s been decades since I left my hometown, and I’ve never belonged to S-Pulse. I just went into the home locker, and it was twice as big as the away locker (lol). I’ve only ever been in a locker, so even though I’m local, I don’t feel like I’m at home at Istar.However, when people in Shizuoka Prefecture hear about Oiwa, they think, “Is that Oiwa from back then, or is it Oiwa from Kiyosho?” I would like you to remember this and watch this match. Please come to the stadium and watch the match, which will be broadcast on TV Asahi. There are players I’m familiar with, like Chuasahi and (Yuta) Matsumura. I have to play without betraying anyone. That’s a bigger responsibility. I also met my mentor and gained strength from him.”
–Many of the fullbacks are injured or in poor condition, so they aren’t at their best. How do you feel?
“This time, I’m a full back, but there are injuries and emergencies in every activity, so I called up a large number of players in anticipation.There was one player who left so far, but I’m not thinking about converting.The current members are in good condition. I’ve been working on it until today. After practicing the day before, I want to think about how to manage the 90 minutes of tomorrow’s game.”
──What kind of image do you have of Argentina?
“There are various expressions for the A national team, such as being ranked number one in the world. Soccer is a very major sport for the country. The U-22 team has a new coach, and they are preparing a team for the final qualifying round for the Paris Olympics in South America next year. Analyze and present what we have done.While respecting the team, it is important that we do our part proactively as it is our home.In order not to show too much respect, we must think about what we can do in our own style. sea bream”
──The players say that their individual strength is high. Are there any key points in terms of defense within the organization?
“We will actively defend from the front line, play individual one-on-one situations, play in situations, and limit the front lines and look for ways to steal from high positions.We will focus on controlling the ball and space. That’s what I want to ask of my players.”
–Are there any players in Argentina we should be wary of?
“There are players on the front line who are targets. There are players who can control the game and calm the ball down. That’s something we need to be careful about. We need to be careful about how they attack and how they defend. I want to focus on that and fight with a clear focus on where we can win individually and as a group.”
──Are there any players you are interested in?
“I intentionally didn’t say their names (lol).The players you are talking about, such as (Facundo) Buonanotte and (Tiago) Almada, have a high level of ability, including their track record and the name of the team they belong to. I feel it when I see it on video. However, I want to make sure that the players don’t get pulled down by it when they actually face each other. It’s important to win individually, but I also want to win as a group.”
–Are you expecting an exciting match from the players?
“I hope to see a positive attitude and aggressiveness coming from the players.”
—Four members from the Asian Games participated. Have there been new stimuli or changes within the team?
“Among those four players, Yuta Matsumura and Keiyoshi Sato have continued to be in this group.More than their performance at the Asian Games, they have continued to express what the group is looking for. They also play the role of mood-makers. They are promoting the integration of players who are new to the game or who have not been called up for many years. In that sense, they are making contributions both on and off duty. Highly skilled players.”
— Are the players and staff who experienced the Asian Games sharing their experiences with those who were not present?
“It seems like we’re talking about things like the situation of the match. We’re both aware of it and I hope there’s a synergistic effect.”
(Interviewed and written by Yusuke Ishikawa)