Match Preview: Brisbane Roar vs. FC Tokyo

 

It’s finally here! In just under 24 hours from now Brisbane Roar will take the field in the 1st game of their 2012 ACL campaign against FC Tokyo. Now this preview will be different to the others because I know very little about the Japanese club so line-ups and the like aren’t really possible. Instead it will be more focused on Brisbane Roar and the Nichols injury/ expanded subs bench and how FC Tokyo are travelling heading into this match.

Tuesday, 6 March
Brisbane Roar v FC Tokyo
Venue:
Brisbane Stadium
Local kick-off: 7:30pm
Referee: Kovalenko Valentin

Firstly here’s a little background information on FC Tokyo: Their squad, preseason form ect.
Squads:

*Bold denotes foriegn players

Brisbane Roar:

1) Michael Theoklitos- GK, 2) Matt Smith- DF, 3) Shane Stefanutto- DF, 4) Matthew Jurman- DF, 5) Ivan Franjic- DF, 6) Erik Paartalu- MF, 7) Besart Berisha- FWD, 8) Massimo Murdocca- MF, 9) Kofi Danning- FWD, 10) Henrique- FWD), 12) Matt Mundy- DF, 14) Rocky Visconte- MF, 16 Sayed Mohamed Adnan- DF, 17) Mitch Nichols- MF, 18) Luke Brattan- MF), 19) Jack Hingert- DF, 20) Andrew Redmayne- GK, 21) James Meyer- FWD, 22) Thomas Broich- MF, 24) Nick Fitzgerld- FWD,  25) George Lambadaridis- MF, 26) Corey Brown- DEF, 28) Anthony Proia- FWD, 30) Matt Acton- GK, ?) James Donachie- DF.

FC Tokyo:
1) Hitoshi Shiota- GK, 2) Yuhei Tokunaga- DF, 3) Masato Morishige- DF, 4) Hideto Takahashi- DF, 5) Kenichi Kaga- DF, 6) Kosuke Ota- DF, 7) Takuji Yonemoto- MF 8 ) Aria Jasuru Hasegawa- MF, 10) Yohei Kajiyama- MF, 11) Kazuma Watanabe- FW, 13) Sota Hirayama- FW, 14) Hokuto Nakamura, 15) Daishi Hiramaatsu, 16) Yuichi Marauyama, 17) Hiroki Kawano, 18 ) Naohiro Ishikawa, 19) Yohei Otake- MF, 20) Shuichi Gonda- GK,  21) Ryontaro Hironaga- GK,  22) Naotake Hanayu- MF, 23) Yohei Hayashi- FW,  24) Kentaro Shigematsu- FW, 27) Sotan Tanabe- MF, 28 ) Shuto Kono- MF, 29) Kazunori Yoshimoto- DF, 30) Jang- Hyun- Soo- DF, 31) Satoshi Tokizawa- GK, 33) Kenta Mukuhara- DF, 35) Kohei Shimoda- DF, 37) Kento Hashimoto- MF, 39) Tatsuya Yazawa- MF, 49) Lucas Severino.

Pre-Season form:

Kawasaki Frontale 2-2 FC Tokyo
FC Tokyo 3-2 FC Seoul

FC Tokyo 2-1 (a.e.t) Giravanz Kitakyushu
FC Tokyo 2-2 Shonan Bellmare

Japanese Super Cup:
Kashiwa Reysol 2- 1 FC Tokyo
* Tokyo lined up in a 4-2-3-1 formation:

 

1) Shiota (GK), 33) Mukuhara (RB), 2) Tokunaga (CB), 3) Morishige (CB), 6) Ota (LB), 10) Kajiyama (RCM), 8 ) Hasegawa (LCM), 4) Takahashi ( RW), 18 ) Ishikawa (AM),  39) Yazawa (LW), 49) Lucas (FWD)

 

They will however be under strength with some key players not making the trip. Quote taken from story on Brisbane Roar web page.

“FC Tokyo touched down in Brisbane in the early hours of this morning without captain and playmaker Yohei Kajiyama and striker Lucas Severino. The duo were left behind after pulling up sore from the club’s Super Cup loss to Kashiwa Reysol on Saturday – Serbian coach Ranko Popovic deciding not to risk his key players with their impending busy schedule, including the kick-off of their domestic campaign this coming weekend.”

 

For Brisbane im sure you’ve all heard that Mitch Nichols will miss due to injury and with Henrique available despite domestic suspension the starting side appears clear cut. If I were a betting man, id put my $$$ on this starting line-up: Theoklitos, Franjic, Smith, Adnan, Stefanutto, Paartalu, Murdocca, Broich, Henrique, Berisha, Fitzgerald.
The substitutes bench is where the most interest is for mine, with an additional 3 places avalialbe, and with Issey unavailable due to not being registered there is actually 4 bench spots open for the rest of the squad. Here’s my take on how it will be constructed.

 

Redmayne- Backup keeper, obvious

Jurman- Providing cover to the central defenders

Hingert- Providing cover for the fullbacks

Brattan- Cover for the central midfielders

Visconte- X-Factor off the bench

Danning- Got the speed to change the game if necessary

Meyer- Seems to be the preferred backup attacker

 

There is one other option and although it would be a risk and may be too soon for him, I would not at all be surprised to see young Proia on the bench. It would perhaps be a risk, but possibly one worth taking in order to get a 2nd out and out striker in the squad. There is also 3 players on the above bench who are best suited to wide midfield roles. Of the 3 imo it would be Danning to miss out if Proia were to be selected, only because he’s been ordinary in youth and the other two are better imo.
Its tough to know what to expect from this fixture given it’s the clubs 1st but it will be absolutely critical to get the famed Brisbane passing game working early and to control possession. This is arguably the weakest opposition in the group so 3pts from a home game is almost essential if they are to get out of the group, and perhaps top it. No matter what happens, we’ve all been waiting so long for this and it’s finally here, so enjoy tomorrow night and hopefully the rain stays away.

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