Southeast Asia Indonesia

Pratama Arhan Makes J.League Debut

Last midweek’s J.League 2 action was a memorable one for Indonesia’s very own Pratama Arhan, as the young left-back finally made his much-awaited debut for Tokyo Verdy away at Tochigi SC.

Verdy head coach Hiroshi Jofuku started Arhan as a right-winger at the Kanseki Stadium in Utsunomiya, spearheading the men in green’s attack alongside Junki Koike and Keito Kawamura.

With games coming quick and fast in both the J2 and the Emperor’s Cup, Jofuku decided to field some of his fringe players for the Tochigi game. Other than Arhan, Verdy’s other fringe players who made it into the starting lineup at Tochigi include Argentine-Italian goalkeeper Matheus Vidotto, veteran left-back Yuta Narawa, right-back Yu Miyamoto, and midfielders Haruya Ide and Ryo Nishitani.

Despite playing out-of-position, Arhan did not look uncomfortable at all in his first Japanese football outing. He was mostly anonymous, due to the fact that he didn’t see much of the ball, but he did made two passes, one of which almost resulting in a goal. Arhan also received a yellow card after fouling Tochigi captain Kenta Fukumori and he was also given corner-taking duties throughout the first half.

Jofuku withdrew Arhan during half-time and replaced him with Mizuki Arai, and the former PSIS Semarang man watched from the bench as Verdy plundered home a 1-0 victory thanks to a 76th minute strike from another substitute, Ryoga Sato.

After the game, Arhan expressed that despite playing out-of-position, he felt comfortable operating out as a right-winger. Speaking to the Verdy official social media team, Verdy expressed his delight on finally debuting and his ambitions of working even harder to leave his mark on Jofuku’s squad.

Unfortunately, Arhan’s debut was marred by the sacking of his interpreter at Verdy, Auliya Agung Barkah. Barkah was fired after he had leaked the news of Arhan’s inclusion in Jofuku’s starting lineup a day before the Tochigi match on his Instagram account.