The Knight in the Area – A Football Anime that Leaves you Wanting for More

As someone who follows football which is the most popular sport in the world, it was great news to hear that there was an anime about football that is currently showing. Some might call The Knight in the Area a Captain Tsubasa clone but I would prefer to see otherwise with a deeper and grimmer background story here.

The story starts and centers on a certain Kakeru Aizawa, who is just a 14 years old who loved to play football and became a manager in his school’s team. However, his brother, Suguru Aizawa, feels that his little brother is just running away from playing, even though his skills are very good. However, both of them soon get into a car incident, with Suguru’s heart being transplanted into Kakeru so that at least one of them can survive.

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Unlike other sports anime that will give out the vibes of energetic emotions out from the start, the Knight is different where you will feel the protagonist’s sadness and sorrow which he feels from not playing football. However, he soon gets the monkey off his back and develops into a stud in football. His romantic involvement with Mishima Nana, a childhood friend of both brothers, is also another point of interest in the story line.

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Animation in the anime is also decent, if not good enough to qualify as an A list anime. Without being revolutionary, it is clean and well done with clear distinctions being made between each of the characters. Even though paling in comparison to Captain Tsubasa, the shots and the plays in the football game is decent enough to be watchable where some parts may feel a little static to some and could lack fluidity to those who are nitpickers.

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The opening music is ‘Higher Ground’ which is fine and dandy where rhyme & drums are used in abundance. However, The Knight in the Area lacks an ending song, which is peculiar in this age and era where even a 12 episodes anime has an ending song. However, this does not bother me as its cast of seiyuus is very experienced and subtitles do appear on the bottom whenever they are speaking in English or other foreign languages.

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The characters’ developments are what attracted me to this anime. Unlike other sports anime which would like to shift the focus around the ensemble cast, The Knight in the Area mainly focuses on our protagonist, Kakeru, solidifying his back story & how he tackles difficulties before moving onto others who are less important. The anime also has its fair share of great footballing moments with some comedic situations too.

On an overall scale, if you are a football fanatic, this anime will be good for you where you will understand some of the jargons which they use. A casual viewer will also find something in it that they will like, no matter its how the main character preserves or something else. I will put The Knight in the Area at 7.5/10.

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