Yesterday’s Levain Cup game against Albirex Niigata was not that exciting, until that goal was scored. Actually I was watching it half asleep but it waked me up. Yusuke Maruhashi’s pass from their side of the pitch - yes, that was clearly a pass - bounced before the goalkeeper and went over his head, and found the net.
It was actually a lucky goal as he himself admitted saying “I found Kiyo and Rica did a good move so sent them a pass, and as a result it accidentally went into the net” in a post-match interview. But whether he was just lucky or not, a goal is a goal and a win is what matters. His goal from 65-70 meters gave the team a victory last night.
His exciting goal came after he failed to clear the ball and “set up” Cristiano’s goal in last weekend’s league game against Kashiwa Reysol. Although none of his teammates blamed him, like Hiroshi Kiyotake said that goal was generated from a failure by not him but the team as a whole, it must have exactly been a nightmare for him.
It’s true that Maruhashi’s performance has not been stable this season, but what was notable was that he didn’t allow himself to keep being disappointed, looked forward, and concentrated on the game he had ahead. Undoubtedly yesterday’s goal was a lucky one but without his quick recovery from the nightmare, it might have ended in a draw.