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HOME > National Teams > NEWS > U-16 Japan National Team earns second straight victory with win over India at the 5th WAFF U-16 Championship 2018


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U-16 Japan National Team earns second straight victory with win over India at the 5th WAFF U-16 Championship 2018

04 August 2018

U-16 Japan National Team earns second straight victory with win over India at the 5th WAFF U-16 Championship 2018

The 5th WAFF U-16 Championship 2018
U-16 Japan National Team vs U-16 India National Team

Fri. 3 August 2018 Kick-off time 20:00 (Local time) Match duration 90mins (45mins x2)
Amman International Stadium, Amman

U-16 Japan National Team 2-1 (0-1, 2-0) U-16 India National Team

26' goal against (U-16 India National Team)
57' KONDO Kuraba (U-16 Japan National Team)
64' TOYAMA Shoji (U-16 Japan National Team)

Starting Line-up
GK: NOZAWA Taishi Brandon

DF: TAJIMA Mitsuki, ISHIDA Yusuke, SAKO Maaya, NAGATA Yuri
MF: YOKOKAWA Asahi, SUMI Kohshiro, MITO Shunsuke, NAKANO Ryuma
FW: NAKANO Keita, AOKI Yusuke

54' MURAKAMI Keishi → NAKANO Keita
71' KONDO Kuraba → AOKI Yusuke
85' NAKANO Shinya → ISHIDA Yusuke

Match Report

The 5th WAFF U-16 Championship 2018 got underway on Wednesday 1 August as the U-16 Japan National Team played their second match against the U-16 India National Team, who has beaten Jordan 4-0 in their first match. Despite allowing the opening goal, Japan defeated India with a final score of 2-1.

With the team entering the tournament with a strong intention to, “Reach the pinnacle of Asia without displaying weaknesses,” Japan managed to win their opener, but there were still many issues left to be solved. The Japanese side got into the second match with the same theme to further improve the team. In the early minutes of the match, Japan showcased their dominance in ball possession, but struggled to create chances against India who played with high intensity. Conversely, Japan gave up a penalty kick after they allowed an Indian player to break through the left flank, who fired a shot which struck the hand of a Japanese defender in the box. India converted the spot kick to open the scoring. The match entered halftime with India leading with a score of 1-0, as Japan continuously showcased their carelessness which denied them from creating chances to score goals.

After watching his squad showcasing a poor performance, Coach MORIYAMA Yoshiro used strong words to fire up his players, “There were no sense of urgency, no one was fighting for the ball, and I saw zero leadership on the pitch.” The coach continued by stating, “We must show stronger intention to fight, and outrun our opponents.”

The second half saw a completely different version of the Japanese side, as they made more runs and fought harder to win the ball. With the team showcasing higher intensity, the long-awaited equaliser came in the 57th minute, when midfielder KONDO Kuraba converted the cross delivered by defender UEDA Keita. With momentum on their side, Japan’s go-ahead goal came just seven minutes later when forward TOYAMA Shoji struck a header off Kondo’s delivery. The team fought through to apply aggressive pressure despite seeing numbers of their players getting cramps in their leg and managed to sustain their lead to earn their second consecutive victory.

With momentum on their side, The U-16 Japan National Team will now face the home side, U-16 Jordan National Team on Sunday 5 August.

Players' Comments

GK #12 NOZAWA Taishi Brandon (FC Tokyo U-18)
In the first half, we couldn’t control the match the we intended, as we lacked pressure towards the ball and reacted passively when our opponents applied pressure towards us. However, we were able to reset our minds in the second half to challenge the ball more aggressively and attacked the goal with more intensity. I am glad that we managed to win the match as a result. In terms of defence, I was able to give everything I’ve got to defend the goal, so I will continue to do so in our upcoming matches. Even though we managed to win the match today, if we keep playing like we did in the first half, we cannot win at the AFC U-16 Championship. In today’s match, our coach helped us pick up the momentum in the second half, but from now on, we must take the lead to construct our team.

DF #7 UEDA Keita (Yokohama F・Marinos Junior Youth)
Today, we made the match tough on ourselves, but I am glad we managed to win the match at the end. Personally, I was able to assist a goal with my cross, deliver the pass that initiate our attacks, challenge the fifty-fifty balls, and throw out my body to defend the goal. However, I also made mistakes when crossing the ball and failed to give my teammates directions when defending against opponents that were out of my reach. Those are some aspects I must improve ahead of our next match. In the remaining matches, I will work hard to improve myself and help my team play the matches without showcasing any weaknesses.

MF #21 YAMADA Nao (Urawa Reds Youth)
Although we managed to win today’s match against India, we were overwhelmed by the pressure applied by our opponents in the first half and allowed them to take the initiative. We did manage to perform aggressively as a team in the second half and come from behind. I personally saw issues where I couldn’t win the ball in certain situations, and the pace of my plays were too slow, so I must emphasis these points in my daily trainings to improve on those aspects. I will utilise my strengths to contribute to the team’s victory.

FW #11 TOYAMA Shoji (Gamba Osaka Youth)
Despite winning the match 2-1, we couldn’t cope with our opponents’ momentum and we couldn’t play our game at all. We were forced to play passively and showcased a poor performance both as a team and as an individual. However, we did manage to reset our mindset in the second half and apply more pressure from the front line, which allowed us to play in our rhythm and win the ball more often. I personally saw situations where I couldn’t hold onto the ball in the final third, so I must improve in that aspect. I did manage to showcase my strength in the scene where I scored the goal, so that’s something I’d like to continue with. We still have two more matches to go, so we will all head into those matches with strong intentions to win them both and take home the title.


The 5th WAFF U-16 Championship 2018
Wed. 1 August 1-0 1st Match vs U-16 Yemen National Team
(Amman/King Abdullah Ⅱ International Stadium)
Thu. 2 August TBC Training
Fri. 3 August 2-1 2nd Match vs U-16 India National Team
(Amman/King Abdullah Ⅱ International Stadium)
Sat. 4 August TBC Training
Sun. 5 August 17:00 3rd Match vs U-16 Jordan National Team
(Amman/King Abdullah Ⅱ International Stadium)
Mon. 6 August TBC Training
Tue. 7 August TBC Training
Wed. 8 August TBC Training
Thu. 9 August 17:00 4th Match vs U-16 Iraq National Team
(Amman/King Abdullah Ⅱ International Stadium)
Fri. 10 August TBC Training

*Local Time
*The schedule is subject to change due to the team condition, the weather, etc.

WAFF U-16 Championship

Three member associations of the WAFF (West Asian Football Federation), Jordan, Yemen, and Iraq will be joined by India and Japan.

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