|Last Season Finish||2nd|
Osaka Gunners are one of the rivals clubs of East Tokyo United. They were 2nd in the league standing in the previous season.
Osaka Gunners finished 2nd on the league table in the prior season but they were first in terms of goals scored. In the current season, just prior to their match with ETU, they were both 1st on the league table in terms of points and first in terms of goals scored.Their 9th league match was against Vanguard Kofu, which they won 8-0 thanks to their super attacking four forward format.
Osaka Gunners came into their game against ETU, their 10th League match, the clear favourites and dominated the first half. Gunners opened a scoring with a header from Haur which was assisted by a pass from Katayama. Their second goal came from Kubota, who took advantage of momentary inattention from Sugie to score thanks to a pass from Hatake. On the other end of the field, Gino kept passing the ball long and while normally Hiraga would be able to ignore such passes, due to Tsubaki's speed, Hiraga was forced to run and clear the ball. However, due to the frequency of bad passes, Hiraga concluded that Gino was having an off-day, especially when Hiraga noticed Gino making unhappy faces.
Osaka went into half-time breaming with confidence, with Hiraga telling the whole locker-room that Gino was having a bad day. However, things started to change in the second half. When the Gunners made a push for the third goal, which Dulfer had told them would secure victory, Tsubaki executed a superb steal from Kubota and headed towards the Osaka Gunners goal. Hiraga attempted to stop him, only to falter as his legs gave out. Kubota too, failed to give chase as his stamina was near its end. Tsubaki initially passed to Natsuki but Natsuki's shot hit the cross-bar. Akasaki picked-up the loose ball.
Natsuki screamed for Akasaki to let him shoot, causing the Osaka goalkeeper Imai to focus on him and instruct Lime to block Natsuki. Only after that Imai noticed that Akasaki was going for the goal. Imai dived to save the shot but failed. Taking the score to 1-2. Soon after, Osaka was forced to substitute Kubota as he was worn out. Osaka opted to substitute the attacking Kubota for the more defensive Otamo. This triggered Tatsumi to make his move and take out Kiyokawa for Tanba.
It was around this time that Katayama was forced to track back to midfield to defend and it dawned on Hiraga and he might have been being made to run to wear him out. Gino confirms this to be the case and clarifies that he was making unhappy faces because he realised his pass success rate goes down when he deliberately puts the ball in odd places. Hiraga then realises that Gino is actually in very good form. Observing from the stands, Blanc deduces that Tatsumi has handed Dulfer a conundrum as the worn out Hiraga must be substituted but as the captain, Hiraga is the transmitter of Dulfer's philosophy on the fieled - making him a figure that is irreplaceable. In short, Dulfer cannot replace Hiraga without abandoning his philosophy.
As Dulfer struggles with his conundrum and delays substituting Hiraga, ETU launches another attack with Tsubaki storming towards the Osaka goal. He is literally brought down by Hiraga when the latter tugs on his shirt just outside the penalty area. This results in Hiraga conceding a goal wall penalty kick. As Hiraga stands as part of the wall, he overhears Imai state that Akasaki, who had set down the ball in preparation for the penalty, was going to shoot as Akasaki's shots had been very accurate during the match. Hiraga realises in horror that Imai had mis-assessed the situation and warns him that it will be Gino, who was also posed near the ball, as it was Gino who was in great form. Imai appears to dismiss Hiraga's concern but thinks to himself that whether its Gino or Akasaki matters little as both would go straight for the goal. However, this also proves a false assessment as Akasaki skips over the ball and Gino takes the shot but does not go for the goal, instead sending an air ball towards Sugie who uses Terauchi as leverage to head the ball into the goal. As such, Sugie draws ETU level with Osaka.
Sugie's goal came as a surprise and before he scored, Dulfer had decided to take both Haur and Hiraga off for two defensive players Katsuragi and Minami, to attempt to maintain their one goal advantage. However, after Sugie's goal, the focus became to come away with a draw. ETU kept the pressure on, taking out Sugie and Akasaki for Hotta and Miyano. They did not change forwards, which made Yamai think that ETU too was going for a draw. However, as the photographer Tamotsu Kudo noted, although it was a draw Osaka seemed harried but that ETU players seemed to be enjoying themselves. ETU kept attacking, shutting down all attempts at a counter by Osaka. Then, during the four minutes of injury time, Sera headed in a loose ball that Terauchi was trying to clear. As a result, Terauchi ended-up kicking Sera hard and contributing towards dislocating Sera's shoulder. The game ended 3-2 in ETU's favour.
After the game, Dulfer offered no excuses and said nothing to Tatsumi. Simply shaking his hand and glaring at him. As he walked off the pitch, he told Sonoda that he was frustrated and angry with himself but he was still very satisfied. Sonoda stated that he understood Dulfer's feelings as the match was a good one, played at the highest level. Dulfer then warned that the next time they would meet in Osaka's home grounds and Tatsumi in-turn acknowledged that next match was going to be tough once again.
The Gunners entered the league season summer break on top of the League table with 36 points. During the summer break, Dulfer joined the coaching team for the World All Stars in the Primal Cup all stars game. Haur joined the all stars line-up for the World Stars. Shimura and Kobuta joined the Japanese All Stars line-up. Dulfer was upset to lose a second time to Tatsumi when the Japanese All Stars won 3-1, with Tatsumi at the helm.
Osaka Gunners have a number of National Players: Shimura, Hiraga, Terauchi and Komuro. In addition, Kubota was a substitute for the U-19 National side, and also played for U-23 Olympic side against Hong Kong. Shimura and Kubota were part of the Japanese All Stars, with Haur playing with the World All Stars, during the Primal Cup All Stars game.
Hiraga is the Captain of the Osaka Gunners and generally does not miss games unless due to injury and suspension. In addition, Dulfer is reluctant to substitute him as that is an indication Dulfer is abandoning his super attacking philosophy. When Hiraga is substituted, Terauchi becomes the on-field captain.
- Osaka Gunners are modelled after Gamba Osaka.
- ↑ Giant Killing Anime; Episode 6
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Giant Killing Anime; Episode 18
- ↑ Giant Killing Anime, Episodes 20-21
- ↑ Giant Killing Anime, Episodes 22-23
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Giant Killing Anime, Episode 24
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Giant Killing Anime, Episode 25
- ↑ Giant Killing manga; Volume 18
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 Giant Killing Manga; Chapters 124-128
- ↑ Giant Killing Anime, Episode 19
- ↑ Giant Killing Anime, Episode 21
- ↑ Giant Killing Anime, Episode 26
- ↑ 12.00 12.01 12.02 12.03 12.04 12.05 12.06 12.07 12.08 12.09 12.10 12.11 12.12 12.13 12.14 12.15 12.16 12.17 12.18 12.19 12.20 12.21 12.22 12.23 Giant Killing Manga; Volume 8, page 01