A change at Vissel
Vissel Kobe have made their second manager change of the season, parting ways with Miguel Ángel Lotina and putting Takayuki Yoshida in charge.
Yoshida has managed the Ushi before, but now he takes over a team that is bottom of the table and in need of a jolt to make a push for safety. One thing that will be required is more goals and this week also saw the signing of Montenegro international striker Stefan Mugoša, who has previously dazzled in the K League.
Will the changes the Ushi have made be enough? We’ll get our first indication this weekend when Vissel visit Sagan Tosu.
Can anyone slow down Léo Ceará?
Yokohama F·Marinos have a knack for always finding a great goal scorer and right now their unstoppable frontman is Léo Ceará. The Brazilian has three goals and two assists in Marinos’ last three games, firing the Tricolor to three wins that have them firmly atop the table.
What makes Léo Ceará so special is the multitude of ways he can break down defenses. Sometimes he’s the pure poacher, popping up on the back post for a tap in, but he can also finish from distance, prove a physical presence in front of goal or drop deep and slide passes in for teammates to finish. He does it all, making him a nightmare to defend, which Shimizu S-Pulse have the misfortune of being tasked with this weekend at the National Stadium.
Watch Machino shine bright
It’s impossible to overstate how good Shuto Machino has been of late. He’s scored six goals in Shonan Bellmare’s last four games, helping them take full points and rise out of the relegation zone. He has now scored fully half of Shonan’s goals on the season, highlighting just how massive he has been for their team and he’s up to second in the league’s scoring chart.
Machino’s exploits would be terrific for any player, but for someone who is only 22 years old, they are truly sensational. He’s no longer a bright prospect, but a full blown star and he’ll be on centerstage this weekend when Shonan host Nagoya Grampus as they try to keep their excellent run of form going.