Lanús seeks redemption from their recent defeat against Atletico Mineiro in the Recopa Sudamericana by winning the title of the Suruga Cup against Japan’s Kashiwa Reysol on Wednesday (10h00 GMT).
The Suruga Cup has taken place since 2008 between the champion of the Japanese J-League Cup and the winner of the Copa Sudamericana, so the representation for the Conmebol this time corresponds to Lanús, appearing in the Cup for the first time.
"Beyond having lost the Recopa, I think the image that we left as a team and as a club was excellent," said Barros Schelotto before leaving to Japan, where they have the "challenge of winning the (Suruga) cup" in the country of their rival.
The COACH does not believe that what happened to them against Atlético Mineiro could have repercussions against with Kashiwa Reysol: "They are different situations, different matches. What is important is what is coming (...) The match in Japan and being able to win."
Kashiwa Reysol is currently eighth in the Japanese championship (18 teams) with 27 points, 10 units from leaders Urawa Reds and Sagan Tosu.
Although the Kashiwa football team is not considered one of the greatest, they have accumulated several titles since returning to the J-League in 2010, with the help of veteran Brazilian coach Nelsinho Baptista (since 2009).
The team nickname adopted as the union of the words (in Spanish) 'king' and 'sun' won their first league title in 2011, the Emperor's Cup the following year and the League Cup in 2013.
In 2011, they participated in the Club World Cup, finishing in fourth place in the quarterfinals after defeating Monterrey in penalties and losing in the semifinals against Brazil's Santos.
"They try to handle the ball, from the sides and finish the play, to shoot the ball in the box right away," analyzed the Coach of Lanús.
The squad of the Japanese team consists mostly of local players, but has two South Koreans, defender Kim Chang Soo and midfielder Han Kook Young (both played the World Cup in Brazil-2014 in their countries) and the Brazilian striker Leandro.
After training at Corinthians and Atletico Nacional Clube (SP), Leandro has conducted most of his professional life in Japan, with the exception of three seasons in Qatar (2009-2012).
The history of this tournament, which began in 2008, is an example of the relationship between CONMEBOL and the Japan Federation (JFA).
Arsenal of Argentina and Brazil’s Internacional won the first two editions, but the Japanese teams have won the last four: FC Tokyo (2010), Jubilo Iwata (2011) and the Kashima Antlers, the great rival of Reysol in 2012 and 2013.
The match will be held at the Hitachi Soccer Stadium of Kashiwa with the capacity for 16,000 spectators, and will be refereed the South Korean Kim Jong-hyeok.
Barros Schelotto took the entire team to Japan, including defenders Carlos Araujo and Diego Braghieri, and striker Silvio Romero, who has been affected by injuries.
"We have been training for a week. I'll see how they are, how they respond and if I think they're ready to play then I’ll put them in," said the coach, who performed double practice session since the team's arrival last Friday in Japan.
Possible starting team
Kashima Reysol: Takanori Sugeno - Masato Fujita, Daisuke Suzuki, Tatsuya Mashushima, Wataru Hashimoto - Han Kook-young, Ryoichi Kurisawa, Hidekazu Otani, Kaoru Takayama; Leandro, Masato Kudo. COACH: Nelsinho (BRA)
Lanús: Agustín Marchesín - Carlos Araujo, Gustavo Gómez, Diego Braghieri, Maximiliano Velázquez - Diego González, Leandro Somoza, Víctor Ayala, Jorge Ortiz - Santiago Silva and Lautaro Acosta. COACH: Guillermo Barros Schelotto.
Referee: Kim Jong-hyeok (KOR)