Composition 12

Today I introduce two footballers of my favorite to you. They are Abe Masanori and Fukumura Takayuki. Both of them played on FC Gifu.


Abe is the former captain of Gifu. He played as center-back, full-back, and defensive midfielder. I can't say he was a skillful player by any standard. Frankly speaking, his technique was poor even in the level of J2, the second division of Japanese professional football. Besides, he was not tall in center-back players. Into the bargain, he couldn't run fast. The opponent strikers often shook off from him, and he used to seize their body or uniform from behind, so he got a yellow card in the end.
Then, what is a good point of Abe? It is his fight only. I imagine he was highly evaluated for his fighting spirit by the manager, and I think this is why he was chosen as the captain. Any other strong point? No, I can't remember except his courage.
He retired in 2019. I miss him, although I was irritated every time he was left behind by opponents.

では阿部のいいところは何か? 闘志だけだ。たぶん監督にガッツを評価されていたからキャプテンに選ばれたのだと思う。他の長所は思い出せない。

On the other hand, Fukumura was a skillful player. I believe he deserves playing in J1, the first division. Evidence that, before he took part in FC Gifu, he had played on Shimizu S-pulse, which is a club of J1. His skill was at the highest level of the players Gifu can get.
His position was left full-back, and he broke my preconception of this position. He had a broad vision and instinct of passing. Therefore he moved into the center of the field according to the occasions and played as if he was a playmaker. Now 'false full-back' has become a popular term in football, but most Japanse fans didn't know this concept at that time. Fukumura may be the first player in Japan who played a role of false full-back throughout the season. He was very, very advanced.
However, his excellent performance remained only one season. Gifu released him in 2018. Afterward, he belonged to Gainare Tottori, a club of the third division, and he plays on Tokyo Verdy, a club of J2, since this year. He is only 28 years old, and I think he is too young to retire. I pray he will get back his brilliance.