Japanese Non-league Football News

Arte Collapse As Ten Leave
JFL side Arte Takasaki, who have consistently indicated over the last few seasons that their intention was to work towards a place in the J-League, are now in a state of total disarray after no fewer than ten members of the first team squad have left the club. These include the key duo of midfielder Keita Fukada and striker Yoichi Mori, who have already joined JFL hopefuls and Kansai League winners Banditonce Kobe - but the only other player to have found a club is goalkeeper Go Kaburagi. In something of a humiliation for Arte fans, Kaburagi has moved to local prefectural league side Tonan SC Gunma, who it is arguable now look the more likely of the two teams to reach the J-League.

Brazilian legend Amaral nevertheless remains to take charge of what is now looking like a sinking ship and has been named as player-coach. Arte stand in eleventh place in the JFL, in what has been a profoundly disappointing season - and Amaral's debut in charge could scarcely be tougher, as they travel to in-form leaders Honda FC on Sunday. The intention must surely be to survive until the end of the season and avoid the relegation play-off places, but the experience of the club formerly called Gunma FC Horikoshi serves to underline what a cut-throat business it is to make the step up from the non-league ranks to the professional game.

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