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Play-offs Final Stage - 03/12/2005
02 Dec 05 Banditonce Kobe 0-2 JEF United Amateurs
02 Dec 05 Rosso Kumamoto 1-1 FC Ryukyu (PK 4-5)


Ranking

1. JEF United Amateurs 3pts (GD +2)
2. FC Ryukyu 2 (-)
3. Rosso Kumamoto 1 (-)
4. Banditonce Kobe 0 (-2)
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Nangoku Kochi Controversy As Terao Walks Out
Shikoku League champions Nangoku Kochi have been hit by a major controversy in the wake of their recent failure to win promotion to the JFL via the Regional League Championship Winners Play-offs, which conclude in Okayama this coming weekend.

Having lost in the play-offs to both Shizuoka FC and Banditonce Kobe and thus fallen at the group stage hurdle, the club management issued a positively-worded statement saying that it was disappointing to miss out on promotion again, but that they expected to be able to pick up good quality squad members from Shikoku neighbours Ehime FC and Tokushima Vortis during the close season. Furthermore, the statement also suggested that the club would be looking at other sources of players such as former JFL side Kokushikan University - who have a longstanding reputation for developing footballers - as a means of countering the regular problem of finding it hard to attract players from outside what is a pretty remote area. All this would obviously be with the intention of making a concerted push for a JFL spot this time next year.

02 Dec 05 - The controversial figure of Taku Terao

The controversial figure of Taku Terao

Astonishingly, however, this news has been met with stinging public criticism from Taku Terao, a 28-year-old attacking midfield player with the club who has previously played at Chukyo University and indeed in the JFL with Denso. In a remarkable message posted on the official Nangoku bulletin board, Terao bemoaned at length the lack of progress that he perceives as having been made at the club during the five years since he moved there from Chukyo. "There's nowhere to get a proper job here, just part-time and temporary things," he says. "How can Nangoku Kochi hope to attract good, ambitious players to come and play here under these circumstances? The average age of the squad is getting higher and higher, and there's a lack of professionalism among the staff, the trainers and the players as well."

Terao, who finished the season third top scorer at Nangoku with eight league goals, goes on to question, "What's changed since I came to the club five years ago - in Kochi, in terms of training facilities or infrastructure? It has to be wondered if the management really want to get promoted - are they aware of what's required to get into the JFL and make a success of it? Because the worst thing would be to go up and then get relegated immediately. So we have to ask if the club is really heading in the right direction - and I'm quitting, to look for a club with a good base in its home town and a good ground. After five years here, I feel like I'm starting from scratch."
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