This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.Find sources: "Vissel Kobe" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (May 2021) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
Vissel Kobe
ヴィッセル神戸
Vissel Kobe logo.svg
Full nameVissel Kobe
Nickname(s)Ushi (cows)
Founded1966; 56 years ago (1966)[1]
StadiumNoevir Stadium Kobe
Hyōgo-ku, Kōbe, Hyōgo
Capacity30,134
OwnerRakuten
ChairmanKatsuya Ishiyama
ManagerMiguel Ángel Lotina
LeagueJ1 League
2021J1 League, 3rd of 20
WebsiteClub website
Current season
Noevir Stadium, the home of Vissel Kobe
Noevir Stadium, the home of Vissel Kobe

Vissel Kobe (ヴィッセル神戸, Visseru Kōbe) is a Japanese professional football club based in Kobe, Hyōgo Prefecture. The club plays in the J1 League, which is the top tier of football in the country. The team's home stadium is Noevir Stadium Kobe, in Hyōgo-ku, though some home matches are played at Kobe Universiade Memorial Stadium in Suma-ku.

History

Beginnings in Chugoku

The club was founded in 1966 as the semi-professional Kawasaki Steel Soccer Club in Kurashiki, Okayama Prefecture.[2] It was first promoted to the Japan Soccer League Division 2 in 1986, and stayed there until the JSL folded in 1992.[2]

Move to Kansai and professionalism

In 1995, the city of Kobe reached an agreement with Kawasaki Steel, the parent company, to move the club to Kobe and compete for a spot in the professional J.League as Vissel Kobe. Vissel is a combination of the words "victory" and "vessel", in recognition of Kobe's history as a port city.[2] (Owing to its importance to the city of Kobe, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, parent company of former team patron Kawasaki Steel, remains a Vissel Kobe sponsor. Kawasaki Steel was eventually sold off to become part of JFE Holdings.)

Vissel Kobe began play in 1995 in the Japan Football League, a league below J.League, and the supermarket chain Daiei was slated as the club's primary investor. However, the economic downturn following the Great Hanshin earthquake forced Daiei to pull out and the city of Kobe became responsible for operating the club.

Despite finishing 2nd in the JFL in 1996, Vissel was promoted to the J.League (the champions, Honda FC, refused to abandon their corporate ownership and become a professional club) and began play in the top division of Japanese football in 1997. However, due to mismanagement, including the inability to secure investors and sponsors, Vissel has never been a contender for the league title. In December, 2003, mounting financial losses forced the club to file for bankruptcy protection.

Crimson Group years (2004–2014)

In January 2004, Vissel was sold to Crimson Group, parent company of online merchant Rakuten, whose president is Kobe native Hiroshi Mikitani. Vissel's first signing under the Mikitani regime, İlhan Mansız, who was acquired partly to capitalize on his popularity during the 2002 FIFA World Cup hosted in Korea and Japan, was a massive failure – the Turkish forward played just three matches before leaving the team because of a knee injury. Mikitani also alienated supporters by changing the team uniform colours from black and white stripes to crimson, after his Crimson Group and the colour of his alma mater, Harvard Business School. The Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles, a baseball team also owned by Rakuten but based in Sendai, wear the same colours.

Vissel finished 11th in the league in 2004, the same position as the previous year, and finished 18th and last place in 2005, resulting in automatic relegation from J.League Division 1, or J1, to J2. During the two-year span, Vissel had five different head coaches. 2006 was Vissel's first season in J2 after nine years in the top division of soccer in Japan. They finished 3rd in the 2006 season and were promoted to J1 after beating Avispa Fukuoka in the promotion/relegation play-offs.

During the period of 2007 to 2011 Vissel finished in the bottom half of the table each year. In 2012 they finished 16th, third from last, and were again relegated to J2. In 2013, Vissel finished in second place, 4 points behind Gamba Osaka, which secured their return to J1 for the 2014 season.

On 6 December 2014, Rakuten Inc. bought the team from the Crimson Group.[3]

Rakuten years and first successes (2014–present)

In May 2018, Vissel signed 2010 FIFA World Cup winner Andrés Iniesta from FC Barcelona.[4] In December 2018 Vissel Kobe managed to sign David Villa from New York City FC the Spanish striker scored 13 goals in 28 games. Alongside Sergi Samper and Andrés Iniesta Villa was the third Spaniard in the team in that season in which the Emperor's Cup was won.

On 1 January 2020, first time finalist Vissel beat Kashima Antlers in the 2019 Emperor's Cup final at the recently opened New National Stadium to win the first title in the club history. The furthest Kobe had been in the Cup was the semi-finals of 2000 and 2017.[5] This was Spanish striker David Villa's last professional match.[6] Vissel also qualified for the 2020 AFC Champions League for the first time. On 8 February 2020, Vissel beat Yokohama F. Marinos to win their first Japanese Super Cup title and respectively their second national title ever.[7] In 2021 they achieved an historic third place in the table, qualifying for the AFC Champions League yet again.

Record as J.League member

Champions Runners-up Third place Promoted Relegated
League J.League
Cup
Emperor's
Cup
Season Div. Teams Pos. P W (OTW / PKW) D L (OTL / PKL) F A GD Pts Attendance/G
1997 J1 17 16th 32 6 (1 / 0) 21 (2 / 0) 43 78 -35 24 6,567 Group stage 4th round
1998 18 17th 34 8 (0 / 1) 23 (2 / 0) 45 89 -44 25 7,686 Group stage 3rd round
1999 16 10th 30 9 (3) 4 12 (2) 38 45 -7 37 7,691 1st round 3rd round
2000 16 13th 30 10 (1) 1 16 (2) 40 49 -9 33 7,512 2nd round Semi-finals
2001 16 12th 30 8 (1) 7 10 (4) 41 52 -11 33 13,872 2nd round 4th round
2002 16 14th 30 8 (2) 3 17 33 44 -11 31 10,467 Group stage 3rd round
2003 16 13th 30 8 6 16 35 63 -28 30 11,195 Group stage Quarter finals
2004 16 11th 30 9 9 12 50 55 -5 36 15,735 Group stage 4th round
2005 18 18th 34 4 9 21 30 67 -37 21 14,913 Group stage 4th round
2006 J2 13 3rd 48 25 11 12 78 53 25 86 6,910 3rd round
2007 J1 18 10th 34 13 8 13 58 48 10 47 12,460 Group stage 5th round
2008 18 10th 34 12 11 11 39 38 1 47 12,981 Group stage 5th round
2009 18 14th 34 10 9 15 40 48 -8 39 13,068 Group stage 4th round
2010 18 15th 34 9 11 14 37 45 -8 38 12,824 Group stage 3rd round
2011 18 9th 34 13 7 14 44 45 -1 46 13,233 1st round 3rd round
2012 18 16th 34 11 6 17 41 50 -9 39 14,638 Group stage 2nd round
2013 J2 22 2nd 42 25 8 9 78 41 37 83 11,516 3rd round
2014 J1 18 11th 34 11 12 11 49 50 -1 45 15,010 Quarter finals 2nd round
2015 18 12th 34 10 8 16 44 49 -5 38 16,265 Semi-finals Quarter finals
2016 18 7th 34 16 7 11 56 43 13 55 17,018 Quarter finals Round of 16
2017 18 9th 34 13 5 16 40 45 -5 44 18,272 Quarter finals Semi-finals
2018 18 10th 34 12 9 13 45 52 -7 45 21,450 Play-offs 4th round
2019 18 8th 34 14 5 15 61 59 2 47 21,491 Group stage Winners
2020 18 14th 34 9 9 16 50 59 -9 36 6,041 Quarter finals Did not qualify
2021 20 3rd 38 21 10 7 62 36 26 73 7,120 Play-off stage 4th round
2022 18 TBA 34
Key

Honours

League history

Total (as of 2014): 16 seasons in the top tier, 11 seasons in the second tier, 2 seasons in the third tier and 8 seasons in the Regional Leagues.

Continental record

Season Competition Round Club Home Away Aggregate
2020 AFC Champions League Group G Malaysia Johor Darul Ta'zim
5–1
Cancelled
1st
South Korea Suwon Samsung Bluewings
0–2
1–0
China Guangzhou Evergrande
0–2
3–1
Round of 16 China Shanghai Port
2–0
Quarter-finals South Korea Suwon Samsung Bluewings
1–1 (a.e.t.)
(7–6 p)
Semi-finals South Korea Ulsan Hyundai
1–2 (a.e.t.)
2022 AFC Champions League Play-off round Australia Melbourne Victory
4–3 (a.e.t.)
Group J China Shanghai Port
Cancelled
Hong Kong Kitchee
2–1
2–2
1st
Thailand Chiangrai United
6–0
0–0
Round of 16 Japan Yokohama F. Marinos

Current squad

As of 2 April 2022[8] [9]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
1 GK Japan JPN Daiya Maekawa
3 DF Japan JPN Yuki Kobayashi
5 MF Japan JPN Hotaru Yamaguchi (vice-captain)
6 MF Spain ESP Sergi Samper
7 MF Japan JPN Yuta Goke
8 MF Spain ESP Andrés Iniesta (captain)
9 FW Spain ESP Bojan Krkić
10 FW Japan JPN Yuya Osako
11 FW Japan JPN Yoshinori Muto
14 DF Japan JPN Tomoaki Makino
15 MF Japan JPN Kento Hashimoto
16 MF Japan JPN Koya Yuruki
17 DF Japan JPN Ryuho Kikuchi
18 GK Japan JPN Hiroki Iikura
19 DF Japan JPN Ryo Hatsuse
20 MF Japan JPN Shion Inoue
21 FW Japan JPN Noriaki Fujimoto
22 MF Japan JPN Daiju Sasaki
23 DF Japan JPN Tetsushi Yamakawa
24 DF Japan JPN Gōtoku Sakai
No. Pos. Nation Player
25 DF Japan JPN Leo Osaki
26 DF Japan JPN Nagisa Sakurauchi
28 GK Japan JPN Yuya Tsuboi
29 FW Brazil BRA Lincoln
31 MF Japan JPN Yuya Nakasaka
32 GK Japan JPN Ryotaro Hironaga
33 MF Japan JPN Takahiro Ohgihara
34 MF Japan JPN Yusei Ozaki
41 FW Japan JPN Yutaro Oda
44 MF Japan JPN Mitsuki Hidaka
GK Japan JPN Sosuke Tamura Type 2
DF Japan JPN Ko Tashiro Type 2
DF Japan JPN Shogo Terasaka Type 2
DF Japan JPN Shunta Hirohata Type 2
MF Japan JPN Kakeru Yamauchi DSP
MF Japan JPN Mikaze Nagasawa Type 2
MF Japan JPN Shuto Adachi Type 2
MF Japan JPN Toya Izumi DSP
FW Japan JPN Koki Sotetsu Type 2
FW Japan JPN Niina Tominaga Type 2

Out on loan

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
GK Japan JPN Genta Ito (on loan to Thespakusatsu Gunma)
MF Japan JPN Tatsunori Sakurai (on loan to Tokushima Vortis)

Club staff

[10]

Position Name
Head coach Spain Miguel Ángel Lotina
Assistant head coach Spain Iván Palanco
Assistant head coach Japan Kunie Kitamoto
First team coach Japan Tomo Sugawara
Goalkeeper Coach Brazil Alex
Physical Coach Spain Antonio Gil Puerto
Physical Coach Japan Toru Yamazaki
Conditioning Coach Japan Akira Umeki
Development Coach Spain Lluís Planagumà
Scout Japan Takayuki Yoshida
Analyst Japan Toshiki Yoshimura
Technical Director Japan Keisuke Kurihara

Manager history

Manager Nationality Tenure
Start Finish
Stuart Baxter  Scotland 1 February 1995 31 January 1998
Benito Floro  Spain 1 February 1998 24 September 1998
Harumi Kori  Japan 25 September 1998 31 January 1999
Ryoichi Kawakatsu  Japan 1 February 1999 25 July 2002
Hiroshi Matsuda  Japan 1 July 2002 31 January 2003
Hiroshi Soejima  Japan 1 February 2003 31 January 2004
Ivan Hašek  Czech Republic 1 February 2004 30 September 2004
Hiroshi Kato  Japan 1 October 2004 31 January 2005
Hideki Matsunaga  Japan 1 February 2005 19 April 2005
Émerson Leão  Brazil 19 April 2005 14 June 2005
Pavel Řehák  Czech Republic 15 June 2005 31 January 2006
Stuart Baxter  Scotland 1 February 2006 4 September 2006
Hiroshi Matsuda  Japan 5 September 2006 11 December 2008
Caio Júnior (interim)  Brazil 11 December 2008 30 June 2009
Masahiro Wada (interim)  Japan 1 July 2009 5 August 2009
Toshiya Miura  Japan 5 August 2009 11 September 2010
Masahiro Wada  Japan 11 September 2010 30 April 2012
Ryo Adachi (interim)  Japan 1 May 2012 21 May 2012
Akira Nishino  Japan 22 May 2012 8 November 2012
Ryo Adachi (interim)  Japan 9 November 2012 31 December 2012
Ryo Adachi  Japan 1 January 2013 31 January 2015
Nelsinho Baptista  Brazil 1 February 2015 15 August 2017
Takayuki Yoshida  Japan 16 August 2017 16 September 2018
Kentaro Hayashi (interim)  Japan 17 September 2017 3 October 2018
Juan Manuel Lillo  Spain 4 October 2018 16 April 2019
Takayuki Yoshida   Japan 17 April 2019 8 June 2019
Thorsten Fink  Germany 9 June 2019 21 September 2020
Marcos Vives  Spain 22 September 2020 23 September 2020
Atsuhiro Miura[11]  Japan 24 September 2020 20 March 2022
Lluís Planagumà (interim)  Spain 21 March 2022 7 April 2022
Miguel Ángel Lotina  Spain 8 April 2022 Current

Kit evolution

Home kit - 1st
1997 - 1998
1999 - 2002
2003 - 2004
2005 - 2006
2007
2008
2009 - 2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
2020
2021
2022 -
Away kit - 2nd
1997 - 1998
1999 - 2001
2002 - 2003
2004
2005 - 2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
2020
2021
2022 -
Alternative Kit - 3rd
2014
10th Anniversary
Crimson FC
2015
Club's 20th
anniversary
2017
Kobe Port's 150th
Anniversary
2018 3rd
2019 3rd
2020
Club's
25th Anniversary
2021 3rd
2022 3rd -

Affiliated clubs

References

  1. ^ "CLUBS & PLAYERS : J.LEAGUE.JP". jleague.jp. Retrieved 15 October 2018.
  2. ^ a b c Jリーグ – ヴィッセル神戸 [J.League – Vissel Kobe] (in Japanese). J.League. Archived from the original on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 29 November 2013.
  3. ^ "Rakuten Acquires Football Club Vissel Kobe and Joins the J-League". Rakuten Official Website.
  4. ^ "Iniesta signs with Japan's Vissel Kobe". dailystar.com.lb. 24 May 2018. Retrieved 15 October 2018.
  5. ^ "「天皇杯 JFA 第99回全日本サッカー選手権大会」優勝のお知らせ" (in Japanese). Vissel Kobe. 1 January 2020. Retrieved 1 January 2020.
  6. ^ "Andres Iniesta leads Vissel Kobe to Emperor's Cup glory as David Villa ends career". Daily Mirror. 1 January 2020. Retrieved 1 January 2020.
  7. ^ "Vissel Kobe win Japanese Super Cup after farcical shootout". Eurosport. 2020-02-08. Retrieved 2020-02-09.
  8. ^ "Team Profile". vissel-kobe.co.jp. Vissel Kobe. Retrieved 30 March 2022.
  9. ^ "ヴィッセル神戸 日程" (in Japanese). jleague.jp. Retrieved 25 February 2022.
  10. ^ "Vissel Kobe Players & Staff" (in Japanese). Retrieved 9 April 2022.
  11. ^ "Football: Former Japan midfielder Atsuhiro Miura named Vissel Kobe boss". Kyodo News. 24 September 2020.
  12. ^ "J-League's Vissel Kobe announces business partnership with Thailand's Chonburi FC". goal.com. Mar 30, 2012. Retrieved November 29, 2013.