Ashito sees the striker as everything inside the green rectangle (YouTube)
The new football anime, Ao Ashi, passing Captain Tsubasa (Captain Majid) has gained high popularity and high ratings that a football anime does not usually get. The new anime based on the manga, presented by Production IG, directed by Akira Satō. The latter gave the audience great visual pleasure, and a shift in the world of football anime that the audience had not seen before.
Compared to the old soccer anime, Ao Ashi can be considered a more realistic idea of soccer for young people. Instead of the traditional stories of a hero entering a failing team and leading it to success, this work takes on a different plot. The hero, Ashito, is already playing in his school and leading his failed team to victory, but it’s just a normal school game.
While playing with his school team, the coach of the youth club of the prestigious Esprion soccer academy discovers him, and invites him to take a test to join the Esperion youth team, so the challenge is how to standing, without knowing the basics of football. Ashito is accepted by the recommendation of the trainer who discovered him. He begins to get acquainted with the real world of football, which is nothing like his random game with the school team, to be the least skilled and experienced player at Esperion Football Academy.
In addition to the new plot, Ao Ashi focuses on the details of playing football, playing venues, tactics and training plans, rather than relying on the fictional forces we have seen in previous sports works, as he mentions many references from the real world. of football like player names, and Xavi’s experience mentions Hernandez when he remembers the exact locations of the players, but without mentioning the name of Hernandez, despite it being explicitly mentioned in the manga. So this experience will become the basis for Ashito’s talent, which is still just a talent that lacks basic skills. However, we see a fictional scene of birds talking across the field of vision, but this scene was only figurative, and was not part of the reality of the work.
We can also note other factual details, such as the fact that there is no real audience except for a few friends and people interested in the club. It’s different from what we’re used to seeing in anime that puts large fan bases for youth soccer in local leagues.
These details were interesting to the anime audience, who had not seen a good work about soccer recently, and realism represented a great strength that amazed this audience that used to have exaggerated and imaginative in most anime sports.
Drama and different characters
The recipe that influences the success or failure of any sporting act is surely the drama and the characters. Basketball anime series usually outperform football in this, most likely due to the fact that there are fewer characters in the basketball series, and they can be more prominent.
The drama in Ao Ashi undoubtedly contributed to its superiority. The hero character in the first episodes is established enough, so that the rest of the characters get their space later. Most of Ao Ashi’s action takes place in Espionage Academy, and this gives the possibility to create school dramas, as well as sports dramas, that is, what happens during breaks, lessons and even dorm rooms.
Romance also had a place, albeit simple and traditional; The female characters are three girls, two of whom fall in love with the hero. Although this plot is repetitive, this time the female characters are ambitious. They are not just cheerleaders; One aspires to become a sports doctor, the other a coach, and the third is a journalist whose presence is useful in commenting on what happens in the matches.
The strongest line was the conflict between the academy’s old students and newcomers through tests or discovery. The new ones could not harmonize with the players who had been together since childhood, and the old ones were not able to take these new ones to the places of their colleagues who could not climb to the junior team. And from one person to another the deeper reasons differ.
Champion Ashito has his own struggle in his turn, his previous random game was just about scoring goals, now he has to try different places.
Striker is not everything
From his simple football experience, Ashito considers the striker to be everything inside the green rectangle. This is exactly the position he wants to be positioned in, and he actually gets it. But the highlight of the anime is revealed when the coach decides to make Ashito a left back, which we later learn was decided from the start because Ashito’s skills suit the full back position more. Achito believes he has failed as a player and is torn between going home or playing away from the opponent’s goal.
Ashito decides to experiment to see more soccer details that don’t just revolve around the striker like we used to in previous soccer anime series. Seeing the full back’s potential and importance, Ashito continues to look forward to the forwards, and decides in a match with a strong opponent to find out if he really wants to be a striker, and this match is the last of the first season.