KOBE – Vissel Kobe managed to halt their losing streak at three games but failed to hand Takayuki Yoshida his first coaching win in a 0-0 draw with Yokohama F. Marinos in the J. League on Sunday.
Vissel dismissed Nelsinho on Wednesday after suffering their third defeat in a row that had the Rakuten-owned club wallowing in the bottom half of the table.
Yoshida was named caretaker amid chatter that Barcelona’s shirt sponsor Rakuten was aiming to bring in a big-name manager from Europe on the heels of the summer addition of German World Cup winner Lukas Podolski.
Vissel found a way to stop the bleeding on Sunday as they wait for a full-time appointment in the manager’s chair, but Marinos clearly turned in the better performance as the visitors stretched their unbeaten run to 13 games.
The result saw Erick Mombaerts’ Marinos, now on 44 points, narrow the gap with first-place Kashima Antlers to five points, while Kobe stood 11th on 30 points.
Yoshida credited his team’s defending against the club he once played for over two short spells.
“The second half was an uphill battle for us no doubt, but I thought we defended well until the final whistle,” Yoshida said. “Our work rate was good, we didn’t back down from challenges and now we need to get our attack going.
“I’d like to take this point as a positive and hopefully we can win all three next time against Jubilo (Iwata), who are playing very well at the moment.”
Mombaerts felt his side should have won its fourth successive game after largely dominating the contest, although defender Milos Degenek may have gotten away with one eight minutes to time, when the Australian blatantly yanked down Mike Havenaar inside the area.
“We owned possession and controlled the match for 90 minutes,” Mombaerts said. “But they defended as a block, which we failed to penetrate. We just could not score the one goal which probably would have changed the entire complexion of the game.”