Japanese Non-league Football News

Arte Announce Mass Exit
Gunma prefecture-based JFL side Arte Takasaki have announced that no fewer than fourteen members of their first team squad will leave the club when their contracts expire at the end of July. As yet there is no news of any transfer deals being in place, or of any new arrivals to take the place of departing key players such as top scorer Yoichi Mori and Brazilian forward Beto. But 2006 generally has turned into something of a disaster for Arte, re-launched with a new coach and a new name at the beginning of the year, with their hopes set on working towards a J-League place and putting behind them a period of underachievement as a competitive side in the JFL.

Coach Kim Guan Ho was nevertheless sacked by the end of April after a disappointing start and goalkeeping coach Kazuyoshi Hamaguchi subsequently took up the reins - to little effect, given that the team were ninth in the table when Kim left and are currently eleventh. Their most recent match ended in a disastrous 3-0 defeat at Ryutsu Keizai University and although there has been until now no question of Arte slipping down into the bottom quarter of the table - they're six points ahead of twelfth placed JEF Club - fans will surely be distinctly nervous about the remainder of the season given the drastic weakening of the playing staff that is about to take place.

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