On this day, the 19th January 2015, the "2015 Team Initiation Press Conference" was held at Cerezo House. A record of the press conference can be found below.
■Tamada Minoru, CEO
Greetings, everyone. My name is Tamada Minoru, the new club CEO for the 2015 season.
I have two goals in mind. It goes without saying that the first is our return to the J1 league.
Getting ourselves into the J1 league is easier said than done.
We expect the team to come together and push forward in the right direction, along with the new manager, who we will introduce later.
Also, I would like to realise the Cerezo name.
What I mean by this is that I want Cerezo, the Spanish word for cherry blossom – official flower or Osaka City and a representative flower of Japan – to represent Osaka and Japan as a magnificent team.
Though we will be playing in the J2 league this season, I would like us to return to our beginnings, which is why this year we have chosen the slogan that was used during the start of the Cerezo Osaka club.
You can interpret “For the Top of Dreams” as a desire to reach for one’s highest aspirations and dreams.
The players, our supporters – our two mainstays – and coach Paulo had the following to say:
By the end of this season, we want to look back on a year in which we could share in the joy and thrill of our club’s achievements.
Thank you for your attention.
Hello. I’m Cerezo’s GM, Okuma Kiyoshi.
As Mr. Tamada just said, everyone’s goal is to push the team back into the J1 league in a year.
I would like everyone to know that Cerezo will strive to make full use of the support with which our sponsors have provided us, to become a team that is admired by all of football fans, supporters, and local community members that cheer for us.
■Paulo Autuori, manager
I’m both honoured and happy to return to Japan, and this time to have been chosen to coach a team like Cerezo, rich in history and achievements.
In the past, I mentioned two Portuguese terms (these were mentioned on the club’s website) that stood for a temporary and permanent state of affairs.
The place Cerezo finds itself in now is, if anything, temporary.
This year’s aim is to return the club to the place it has always belonged. To that end, we all intend to work hard.
As anyone can tell you, the two main actors in the game are the supporters and the players.
I will make Cerezo a team that supporters can praise with their heads held high.
Lastly, although we have all already discussed the importance of gaining our rightful place in the J1 league, I also want to stress my intentions of building strong foundations for the coming years.
And after we have made it back into the top league, I want to see to it that Cerezo becomes the team in Japan – able to hold itself against and overcome others in Asia and on the world stage.
Arigato gozaimashita. (Japanese)
My name is Tamada Keiji, former Nagoya Grampus player.
This year I’m going to try my utmost to get our team back into the J1 league.
I want to do everything I can to contribute to this team. So, I’m asking you for your heartfelt support.
I’m Nakazawa Sota, and I have transferred from Kawasaki Frontale.
It seems like the club’s goals are clear.
My desire is to accomplish that goal through hard work and the daily pursuit of this team’s dreams.
I want to pour my heart and soul into this team.
My name is Kogure Daiki, and I’m back on the team after a year’s hiatus.
I’m going to make sure that Cerezo find their way into the J1 league. Show us all the support you can.
It’s been a long time since we met. I’m Mukuhara Kenta, and I used to play for FC Tokyo.
I look forward to receiving the fans’ support and everyone ending the season with a nice big smile on their face. I don’t intend to give up on this club.
My name is Hashimoto Hideo, and I came from Vissel Kobe.
My hometown is right here, in Osaka. So, I want to try my best to get as much playing time on the pitch as possible – so that I can show the home crowds how proud I am of my roots.。
I’m Sekiguchi Kunimitsu, former Urawa Reds footballer.
Don’t shy away from supporting me and the rest of the team, as I, more than anyone, intend to try my best to get Cerezo back into the J1 league.
My name is Moniwa Teruyuki, former Bangkok Glass player.
I want to spend the entire year dedicating myself to the team and contributing towards its success.
I look forward to seeing you on the pitch.
I’m extremely happy to have come to such a spectacular team.
I would appreciate all the support I can get, as I want to do everything in my power to lift Cerezo into the J1 league.
My name is Nukui Hayato, and I was recently promoted from the Cerezo Osaka Youth tothe A-team.
I plan on contributing as much as I can to the team’s promotion to the J1 league.
I’m Maekawa Taiga, a former player for Cerezo Osaka Youth.
I want to push myself hard enough to get to appear in a match in my first seasonat the club.
I’m Sakamoto Masaki, a former Cerezo Osaka Youth team member.
I’m going to fight for our team’s return to the J1 league.
My name is Okino Masaki, and I used to play for the Cerezo Osaka Youth.
I want the fans to cheer me on, so that I can make a difference by playing my first game as soon as possible.
I’m Yonezawa Rei, former Vissel Kobe player.
I’m here to contribute to the team in helping it realise its goal: promotion to the J1 league.
I’m Ikeda Jurato of the Mitsubishi Yowa Soccer Club.
Though I’m only an unknown rookie who has graduated from high school only recently, I plan on making a stand for this team by playing in as many games as I can as soon as possible.
I’m Nishimoto Masataka, former Cerezo Osaka Youth player.
I’m going to train as hard as I can every day for the sake of this team.
Hello, everyone. I once worked in Japan for Kashima, and it excites me to be able to work for a Japanese club once again. I’m going to put in a lot of effort to achieve the club’s goal.
■Murata Kazuhiro, head coach
My name is Murata Kazuhiro, and I was recently promoted to the position of head coach from the Youth team to Cerezo’s professional side.
My job is to assist Paulo, our manager, and to promote good training sessions for our players.
■Haneda Kenji, coach
Hello, I’m Haneda Kenji.
I’m going to support this team in body and soul, in order to see it succeed.
Please continue to show your support for our club.
■Suwabe Yuzuru, analyst
Hi, my name is Suwabe Yuzuru. I intend to work nightand day this great team.
■Tonaki Yozen Jackson, interpreter
I’m going to do everything I can for Cerezo. Thank you for all your support.
Question: Here’s one for the manager. What do you believe is the most crucial consideration in getting this team promoted to the J1 league?
■Paulo Autuori, manager
Put in the simplest terms, we must be able to play “good football.” What I mean by “good football” is the strength to ask ourselves to perform well under any circumstances and to bring out the best of our qualities.
Though the team will spend this year in the J2 league, the club needs to not only focus on this year, but perform for years to come, which is why I believe we need to simultaneously consider forming a formidable foundation from which the team’s players can utilise their talent.
Question: This question is for the new-comers to the team. What personal attributes of yours will come as a benefit to Cerezo Osaka?
Given my age relative to the other members of the team, I have plenty of experience.
I would like the players to see my individual football skills for themselves, so they can judge for with their own eyes.
I would like the others to understand my footballing traits as soon as they can, and I want to make an effort to help them see my good side, as I am a completely new addition to this team. I’ll becoming the backboneof the team once they let me stand on the pitch, by keep everyone concentrated on the game during any tough moments,and by giving my team members the type of positive advice that brings the team together. My aim is to use my skills and to get the players to click with one another.
My greatest attribute is my agility, and that’s something I would like to gradually bring out more and more of for the team.
My strength is my consistency: my stamina and defensive capabilities will maintain themselves throughout the year. I have the past experience playing for a team that was promoted from the J2 league to the J1 league. I would like to contribute what I learnt from that experience.
I have also experienced playing for a team that was relegated to the J2 league and then promoted again into the J1 league. So, I am going to make sure that everyone hears about my experiences whilst I make the most of what I’ve learnt to further the lot of this team.
During my days at Sendai Vegalta, my team was promoted to the J1 league. The upcoming season is sure to be difficult. However, it is important that we all stick together and put our heads together. I’m sure I will touch on my previous promotion experiences during the season.
I’m of the age where I can give the other players advice both on and off the pitch. As a veteran footballer, I aim to provide my team mates with all the support they need.
I believe that with such a fantastic team, and with so many fantastic players, we should have no problem jumping back into the J1 league.
Being a left-footed player, I would like everyone on the team to watch out for my left-footed strikes.
My strength lies in my attacking ability. So, I would like to contributeto the team through my attacking audacity.
Since this is my first year as a professional football player, I see myself throwing myself into the game headfirst, and breaking through the opponent’s lines from centre field, which Isee as a strength that I would like others to notice.
Speed is my forte. Which means that I am going to do all that I can to use my fast playing tactics to get me a position on the pitch.
As a striker, I have my sights set on scoring as many as goals as possible.
My strengths lie in my ability to feed the ball to others and to create opportunities for other players to flourish on the field. Therefore, I plan to spend my days showing the others how inimitably important such skills are.
I’m going to show everyone my stamina, in order to get myself onto the pitch as soon as possible. I’m not going to go out without a fight.
Questions: This one is for the players that have been selected from the Youth team (including Yonezawa and Ikeda). How does it feel to be selected for the Cerezo professional team? And what kind of a player do you see yourselves becoming?
I’m ecstatic. It’s not every day that you get to become a professional football player. I hope to become a regular member of the team, and to appear in Cerezo’s games, and to, eventually, become a world-class footballer.
I’m so glad to have been able to move from the Youth club to the Cerezo A-team. I want to become the player that is active on the world stage.
I have been playing for Cerezo since I was in junior-high school. So, making into the top team here is like a dream come true. My goals are to become a regular team player, to play in the team’s matches, and to become a player that is known the world over.
I’m over the hill. Becoming a professional player and getting to play on a club with a history likeours – I’ve been on the team since I was on the Youth squad – means so much to me. My first aspiration is to play in the club’s fixtures, and after that I would like to turn into a world-class player.
As Osaka is my place of birth, I’m so glad to have been able to become a professional footballer in a team that I have been following since I was a child. Personally, I want to become a gifted international footballer.
In my case, I owe a lot to the team, as I used to play in Tokyo. My future goals are to be selected for the Japan national team, and to join the starting line-up.
I’ve dreamt of playing for Cerezo since I joined the club in year 4 in elementary school. Nothing can describe the joy I felt when I was asked to go pro. I want to become one of Cerezo’s key players, before then going on to play overseas.
Question: This question is for the manager. In your last answer, you mentioned the term “good football.” Could you please tell us exactly what you mean by that?
■Paulo Autuori, manager
By “good football” I mean, high quality football that allows the players to express their skills effectively on the pitch. In order to achieve that, we need to come together as one and all move toward the same goal – both during training and during matches. The key is to keep on practising and fighting for ourselves. During games, we will constantly strive to be the team thattakes the initiative, theteam that is in control of the field, and the team that is master on the pitch.
Question: This one is for Okuma. As GM, what kind of support do you intend to offer the team this season?
Last season we suffered from a bit of an inferiority complex: we were unable to call out to one another when we were in trouble; we couldn’t dig ourselves out of the adverse situation in which we found ourselves. Overall, there was definitely a problem with our psyche. As football is as much a mental sport as it is a physical one, it is important that the players build on their mental experiences and foster a sense of companionship; so, the players can help each other when things get rough. We picked the current team members based on their passion for the team, and their will to become stronger, to push them team back into its rightful position – the J1 league. Listening to the player’s comments at today’s press conference has shown me that they truly are ready to take on such roles. All this is left for them to do now is to put those thoughts into practice – to realise their potential (as a team) and to convert this into results.
Question: Here is another one for Okuma. Could you please tell us what motivated the club to pick Paulo as manager, what you expect from the manager, and how you would like to see the team performing?
My explaining to you why I picked such an experienced and qualified manager would make me come across as a little impudent. However, one but only has to note that Paulo has managed a traditional Japanese team like the Antlers. He has an excellent understanding of the climate and the Japanese mentality, its many forms, and, from the conversations I’ve had with him, one quickly gets the impression that he wants to do all he can to strengthen this team – he’s ready to take on this challenge. Another thingthatmade me want him tomanage this team was the common ground we shared on the issue of player development. Neither of simply want to bring the team back into the J1 league; we have an interest in developing talent, and have thoughts of producing the strongest team possible. The main reason I chose Paulo was that our visions for the future overlap. As a manager, Paulo has the ability to draw on many different experiences. He has been placed in charge of the players I felt fit the team, and I plan on providing him with the firm support that he needs.