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Discussion Starter #1
I noticed this club had five Japanese players on its books, starting with midfielders Ryota Ishikawa and Toshikazu Irie, the two defenders Shouhei Tsuchiya and Shota Yanagi, and the striker Yōsuke Saito, who I read has scored five goals this season. They have a Korean midfielder too, Seung Ki-yoo, but I was wondering why this Latvian club had taken such a sudden fancy to Japanese players? Is it related to their ownership?
 

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says their wiki page:

For the past few years FB Gulbene have actively co-worked with several Japanese football academies, giving their players a chance to play in Europe. Club's president Romāns Lajuks is familiar with the Embassy of Japan Deputy Head of Mission Mr.Takeshi.[3]

Not sure what's the point of it though (from the view of Japanese players) as the level of this club is pretty poor compared to J-League. Maybe they simply want an experience of living in Europe.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
says their wiki page:

For the past few years FB Gulbene have actively co-worked with several Japanese football academies, giving their players a chance to play in Europe. Club's president Romāns Lajuks is familiar with the Embassy of Japan Deputy Head of Mission Mr.Takeshi.[3]

Not sure what's the point of it though as the level of this club is pretty poor compared to J-League.
Thank you.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hidetoshi Wakui (born 21 February 1983) is a Japanese professional footballer who plays for JK Nõmme Kalju in Estonian top-flight league Meistriliiga.

Andy, how's this guy? :D
 

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I don't really follow Estonian league much...Kalju will almost certainly win the championship this season so Wakui will become the first ever Japanese to win the Estonian title.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
This is like the golden age both for Japan and Estonia in terms of football. Both nations are reaching levels and achieving things they've never done prior in their history.
 

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tbh in this season our local league looks shittier than ever before in this century

basically Kalju is the only club left in Estonia which takes it seriously and tries to compile a more or less competitive squad.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
tbh in this season our local league looks shittier than ever before in this century

basically Kalju is the only club left in Estonia which takes it seriously and tries to compile a more or less competitive squad.
What about Levadia Tallinn or Flora?
 

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The problem with Levadia is that the steel magnate who owned them went bankrupt so the club now tries to survive independently without his cash injections...but this means they can't compete because unlike Flora they don't really have that good of a youth system.

As for Flora they have always considered developing their youth players as their main objective...so they usually don't go for average foreigners or our own ex-internationals who come back after failing in other countries. Which means that they often have glaring weaknesses in their squad.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Sometimes while browsing through livescore I would notice some absurd scorelines from the Estonian league, like 11-0 or 13-0. Too many European leagues are headed down this path of zero competition, really, so many cases of it can be listed.
 

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in Estonian and Latvian leagues it has always been like this...the top 2-4 clubs are way ahead of the rest in terms of quality. Many weaker clubs are essentially semi-professional sides with players having part-time jobs.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I read about how Skonto Riga was an extension of the Latvian NT - the coach was the same, the squads both comprised a majority of the same players which made it so useful for building team chemistry. Surely that was an advantage Latvia took advantage of to compensate for their inferior level of talent.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Skonto's record between 1994 and 1997:

P82 W71 D10 L1 F298 A34 +264 Pts 223

1994: P22 W20 D2 L0 F76 A9 +67 Pts 62
1995: P18 W16 D2 L0 F59 A8 +51 Pts 50
1996: P18 W15 D2 L1 F74 A9 +65 Pts 47
1997: P24 W20 D4 L0 F89 A8 +81 Pts 64
 

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チャットキラー;9112830 said:
I read about how Skonto Riga was an extension of the Latvian NT - the coach was the same, the squads both comprised a majority of the same players which made it so useful for building team chemistry. Surely that was an advantage Latvia took advantage of to compensate for their inferior level of talent.
it was almost the same with Flora and Estonian NT too until the mid-00s...but our best results came after that.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Yeah, you said you managed to find that extra bit of quality in attack that you hadn't had in the past - such as Vassiljev [who I think plays at Perm in Russia] and Kink at M'boro, etc.

Since the Baltic forum doesn't have so much activity, I'm gonna spam this thread with photos of Latvia and related nations.
 
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