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Japan U-19s undergo last preparation for first-ever AFC U-19 Championship title

30 October 2016

Japan U-19s undergo last preparation for first-ever AFC U-19 Championship title

The Japan National U-19 Team had clinched a spot in the final match of the AFC U-19 Championship Bahrain 2016 by defeating Vietnam 3-0 in the semi-final. One day after the victory, Friday 28 October, the team engaged only in recovery regimen in the morning including taking ice bath and stretching at hotel to get themselves ready for the last match in the tournament. No workout was held on the pitch and the afternoon was spared for resting. 

Also, the whole team gathered and celebrated the 19th birthday for FUJITANI So (Vissel Kobe) at the dinner table.

On Saturday 29, the day before the final, the official press conference was held at the match site of Bahrain National Stadium, attended by Japan’s coach UCHIYAMA Atsushi and Saudi Arabia coach. The two bench bosses spoke of the past matches they had won and enthusiasm for the upcoming showdown. 

In the evening, the Japanese side took on the final preparation practice. In a relaxing mood from the beginning to the end of the session, the squad reviewed their game plan for the final contest. Even though this is the country’s sixth appearance in the AFC U-19 Championship final, Japan have never came out victoriously in any of the past tries. With the win tomorrow, Japan will hoist the tournament’s trophy for the first time and move on to the FIFA U-20 World Cup Korea Republic 2017 to be held next year as the Asia champions.  

Players' Comments

MF #10 SAKAI Daisuke (Oita Trinita)
Tomorrow we will have to go out altogether, not just players but also team staff as well. We are at the point where we have only one more match left to win. So I want to go home with the championship. Throughout this tournament, the team got better with every match. We want to put out the best performance possible tomorrow.

MF #17 ICHIMARU Mizuki (Gamba Osaka)
Now that we are here at the final, we never want to miss this opportunity to be the champions in Asia. Saudi Arabia are not a team that can be easily beaten, but we will make sure to play our style of football and win the championship. Individually I want to help my team win by getting involved in goals.

DF #2 FUJITANI So, DF, #2 (Vissel Kobe)
Last night I was very happy that the entire team celebrated my birthday. Tomorrow Japan’s first-ever title of the AFC U-19 Championship is at stake. I think a good result will follow if we play the football we have been playing. So I want to compete together as one team and win the tournament with my best teammates.


AFC U-19 Championship Bahrain 2016
Thu. 13 October PM Training
Fri. 14 October 3-0 vs Yemen (Bahrain National Stadium)
Sat. 15 October AM Training
Sun. 16 October PM Training
Mon. 17 October 0-0 vs Iran (Bahrain National Stadium)
Tue. 18 October AM Training
Wed. 19 October PM Training
Thu. 20 October 3-0 vs Qatar (Bahrain National Stadium)
Fri. 21 October TBC Training
Sat. 22 October 16:00-17:30 Training(Al Ahli Club)
Sun. 23 October 16:00-17:30 Training(Al-Najma Club)
Mon. 24 October 4-0 Quarterfinal vs Republic of Tajikistan
Tue. 25 October TBC Training
Wed. 26 October TBC Training
Thu. 27 October 3-0 Semifinal vs Vietnam
Fri. 28 October TBC Training
Sat. 29 October TBC Training
Sun. 30 October 17:30 Final vs Saudi Arabia

*Local Time
*The schedule is subject to change due to the team condition, the weather, etc.
*The Championship's top four ranked teams will then fly the Asian flag at the FIFA U-20 World Cup Korea Republic 2017. If Korea Republic, the hosting country of 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup, advances to the semifinals, the playoff matches will be held deciding the fifth place among the four losing teams in the quarterfinals.

AFC U-19 Championship Bahrain 2016

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