Vissel Kobe are a historic Japanese club. Formed in 1966 as the Kawasaki Steel Soccer Club from the city of Kurashiki, they finally found their way to the Japanese Soccer League Division 2 in 1986, and stayed there until the league folded in 1992. Two years later the city of Kobe came to an arrangement with Kawasaki Steel - the company that owned the club, to move them about 160 miles up the coast and compete for a spot in the newly formed J League.
Great Hanshin earthquake decimated the city of Kobe, and then the local financial downturn led Daiei to pull out - leaving the devistated city of Kobe to foot the bill for the club. Despite all of this, they were promoted to the J League as runners up in 1996.
Hiroshi Mikitani. Now the clue should have been in the name of the group, but after only a short time in charge, Mikitani horrified life-long supporters of the club who'd followed them through all the change and disasters that befell them, by changing their historic black and white striped kit to a sort of off-crimson - resembling Arsenal's centenary kit - which just happened to be the colour of hist university - Harvard Business School.
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