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Argentina comes from behind to beat Japan Futsal National Team – International Friendly Series Match #2

29 January 2018

Argentina comes from behind to beat Japan Futsal National Team – International Friendly Series Match #2

On Sunday 28 January, Japan Futsal National Team held an international friendly match against Argentina at Toyama City Gymnasium. It was the second international friendly match against the world champions.

Japan conceded early and lost 4-2 in the first match. With that in mind, the Japanese side came out strong and got on the scoreboard early in the match. In the first minute, Japan earned a free kick on the left side. SAITO Koichi (NAGOYA OCEANS) took the shot forcing the Argentinian goalkeeper Nicolas SARMIENTO to deflect the ball. SHIMIZU Kazuya (Fugador Sumida) quickly followed up the loose ball and scored to give Japan an early lead.

However, the reigning world champions responded quickly. Within 30 seconds from the first goal, Argentina’s tenacious pressure forced a turnover, which led to Cristian BORRUTO’s equaliser. Having been able to recoup from the long trip, Argentina seemed to regain their form and continued to apply pressure aggressively. While Japan struggled to gain momentum, Borruto gave Argentina the go-ahead goal, ending the first half 2-1 in favor of the South American side.

Argentina came out even stronger in the second half. In the 22nd minute, Japanese goalkeeper SEKIGUCHI Yushi (NAGOYA OCEANS) was able to deny Pablo TABORDA’s shot, but Alan BRANDI successfully followed up the deflection to give his side a two goal lead. A minute later, another goal followed as Japan lost possession deep in their defensive end. Taborda capitalised on the error conceded by Japan, extending the lead to 4-1.

In order to avoid consecutive losses at home, Japan fired shots aggressively, but failed to convert as the opposing goalkeeper Sarmiento showed superb saves. With Argentina’s foul-count accumulating, Japan were given two chances from the second penalty mark, but both MORIOKA Kaoru (Pescadola Machida) and Shimizu came short of finding the net.

With the clock winding down, Japan substituted their goalkeeper out of the game to play their power-play in effort to cut down the deficit. But Argentina adjusted swiftly, giving no ground to cover for Japan. The second match of the international friendly series ended in Japan's 4-1 loss.

Match details

Japan Futsal National Team will make their way to Chinese Taipei on Monday 29 January, to participate in the AFC Futsal Championship. Their first match against Tajikistan is scheduled on Thursday 1 February.

Coaches' and Players' Comments

Bruno GARCIA, Coach (Japan Futsal National Team)
The game was similar to the first game. It was a good thing that we were able to take the initiative early on, but we gave up consecutive goals in just two and a half minutes into the second half. We regained our focus and fought hard to come back, but came short of scoring a goal. In our second game, we were able to make necessary adjustments from the first game, but at the same time the things we lacked were evident. Both of that should help us, because now we know what we need to work on ahead of the AFC Futsal Championship.

FP #3 MUROTA Yuki (Japan Futsal National Team / PESCADOLA MACHIDA)
In the two games we played, there were quite a few occasions where our pressure upfront seemed to work well. But it’s when they get passed our pressure, we couldn’t find ways to push back. In those situations we can’t let our opponents just finish as they did in these games. Our main focus is the AFC Futsal Championship, so we will recover first, and then work hard towards it.

FP #7 HENMI Katsutoshi Rafael (Japan Futsal National Team / SL Benfica/Portugal)
Each game we play, we seem to blend in as a team. We can keep getting better as we train and play more games together. There is little difference between the level of the Japanese league and that of the world's top level. There are players who has played overseas, and many high quality players from abroad, so there isn’t that big of a difference. We’ll fight with confidence at the AFC Futsal Championship.

FP #11 HOSHI Shota (Japan Futsal National Team / Bardral Urayasu Futbol Sala)
It was good that we scored first, but the way we conceded the goals were regrettable. I think it was more of an individual flaw, rather than a team flaw. The result speaks for itself, we need to defend better, and also take more shots. We know what we need to do in terms of defence, but we need to find ways to improve our offence. We need to work on our attacking patterns, other than the set- pieces.

FP #13 WATANABE Tomoaki (Japan Futsal National Team / FUCHU ATHLETIC F.C.)
It was good that we maintained our intensity in defence throughout the two matches. In terms of offence, Argentina kept the pressure on from the halfway line in the first match, but they came out pressing full court today. Their intensity level was completely different, and it was tough to fend off their pressing. The experience we've gained here playing against Argentina should help us when we face strong opponents in the AFC Futsal Championship.

Diego GIUSTOZZI (Argentina National Futsal Team)
Today we were able to play more comfortably than the first match. Mainly because our condition was much better, and we were able to have a good preparation as well. The first 25 to 27 minutes of the game we played very well. Once we led the game 4-1, Japan came out with their power-play and we were forced to be dominated, but that was natural considering the course of the game. It was a very positive display of how Argentina play. We played like champions when we had possession, and we showed eagerness to get the ball back when we didn’t have possession.

Schedule

Mon. 22 January 10:00
18:00
Training (ARENA TACHIKAWA TACHIHI) *open to the public
Training (ARENA TACHIKAWA TACHIHI) *closed‐door
Tue. 23 January 10:30
18:00
Training (ARENA TACHIKAWA TACHIHI) *open to the public
Wed. 24 January 10:00
PM
Training (ARENA TACHIKAWA TACHIHI) *open to the public
Official Training *closed‐door
Thu. 25 January 10:00
Training (ARENA TACHIKAWA TACHIHI) *open to the public
2-4 International Friendly Match vs Argentina
(Tokyo / Ota-City General Gymnasium)
For more information
Fri. 26 January 18:00 Training *open to the public
Sat. 27 January AM
PM
Training*closed‐door
Official Training *closed‐door
Sun. 28 January 1-4
International Friendly Match vs Argentina
(Toyama / Toyama City Gymnasium)
For more information

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

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