JFA Futsal Technical Director KONISHI Teppei reflects on AFC Futsal Asian Cup™ Kuwait 2022
14 October 2022
The AFC Futsal Asian Cup™ Kuwait 2022, held from Tuesday 27 September to Saturday 8 October, ended with the Japan Futsal National Team winning the title for the first time in eight years. First of all, I would like to thank all the players and staff, the JFA, the F.League, the Japan Futsal Federation, the regional FAs, the fans and supporters, and the media who were there on site to report our activities.
Ahead of the Asian Cup, the team was able to conduct a training match against Bardral Urayasu during the domestic training camp held at Prince Takamado Memorial JFA YUME Field which started on Monday 5 September, and international friendlies against Brazil Futsal National Team in Matsue, Shimane, and Toyota, Aichi. The team also played a friendly match against Bahrain Futsal National Team at the training camp held in Bahrain just before the tournament. The players and staff were grateful for all the support they received, which gave them the boost they needed to fight through each match.
All six matches of the Futsal Asian Cup were tense and stressful, as if they were the title match. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the players for showcasing such wonderful performance, and the head coach, coaching staff, medical staff, media, and team administrators for their efforts to bring out the best in the players. Thank you very much.
The overall trend at this year's Futsal Asian Cup was that most teams were looking ahead to the next FIFA Futsal World Cup™ in 2024 and were making drastic shifts towards a younger squad to replace those who played in the FIFA Futsal World Cup Lithuania 2021™. The following are the countries that have included at least two players under the age of 23 in their current roster:
|IR IRAN||SALAR AGHAPOUR||22|
|CHINESE TAIPEI||LIU JU-MING||21|
|INDONESIA||MUHAMMAD RIZKI XAVIER||23|
|DEWA RIZKI AMANDA||22|
|IDO KOSEI (Backup Member)||19|
|MIYAGAWA TAIKI (Backup Member)||21|
|VIETNAM||CHAU DOAN PHAT||23|
|NHAN GIA HUNG||20|
|SAUDI ARABIA||HUMOOD ALDAHHAN||23|
|MESHARI ATIF ALOBID||22|
|FAHAD MUHALHIL RUDAYNI||23|
10 out of 16 teams are currently rostering two or more young players. In particular, many countries have a large number of players ranging between 22-23 in their squads, and it is noticeable that players who took part in the country's U-20 national team at the AFC U-20 Futsal Championship Iran 2019 have been promoted directly to the top team, giving the impression that many countries have a solid bridge between the U-20 national team and the top team. This will have a significant impact on the overall level of competition in Asia. As the competition intensifies, Japan will face greater challenges to win the Asian title, but we strongly believe that this rise in competition is essential for Japan to achieve great results in the future World Cups.
Additionally, Japan has brought up two players from an even younger generation (AFC U-20 Futsal Championship 2021 *Cancelled due to the pandemic) as backup members of the team. At the moment, however, the development of the players in the 21-23 age group has been a major challenge for Japan in terms of gaining international experience and building their competitiveness, so we will pursue a plan to strengthen these players in the coming years.
Below are the general stats of the semi-final against Uzbekistan and the final against Iran:
These stats show that Iran had taken the initiative in the final, but Japan were able to find a way to win the match through their excellent defence. As coach KOGURE Kenichiro mentioned, one of the challenges for the future is how to seize the initiative against teams like Iran.
In order to achieve this, and considering the goals set for the World Cup, developing individual skills and finding new talents in the development age groups will undoubtedly be key for the future. Starting in October this year, the Strengthening and Development Sub-Committee, which will discuss how the league and the JFA can work together to strengthen and develop the U-18 and U-15 generation at F.League clubs, will be launched, as well as the new initiatives of the Futsal U-18 training centre (November and December).
Under the leadership of head coach Kogure, this team was launched in November 2021 with assistant coaches TAKAHASHI Kensuke and SUGA Takehiro, GK coach UCHIYAMA Keitaro and physical coach BABA Motonori as the coaching staff. With the team's ultimate goal being set to win the FIFA Futsal World Cup™ in 2036, their immediate goal is to reach the top eight in the FIFA Futsal World Cup™ in 2024. Using the success of the AFC Futsal Asia Cup™ Kuwait 2022 as a stepping stone, we will further strengthen our cooperation with the F.League, the Japan Futsal Federation and the regional FAs to achieve the ultimate goal of the Japanese futsal community as a whole.
JFA Futsal Technical Director
AFC Futsal Asian Cup™ Kuwait 2022
Tournament Date: Tue. 27 September - Sat. 8 October 2022
- National Teams 2022/10/09 【Match Report】Japan Futsal National Team defeat Iran in Final to claim fourth Asian title! - AFC Futsal Asian Cup™ Kuwait 2022
- National Teams 2022/10/07 【Match Report】Japan Futsal National Team earn ticket to final with a come back win over Uzbekistan! - AFC Futsal Asian Cup™ Kuwait 2022
- National Teams 2022/10/05 【Match Report】Japan Futsal National Team defeat Indonesia in a close battle to advance to the semi-finals of the AFC Futsal Asian Cup™ Kuwait 2022
- National Teams 2022/10/03 【Match Report】Japan Futsal National Team finish group stage in first place and clinch knockout stage with a win over Vietnam - AFC Futsal Asian Cup™ Kuwait 2022
- National Teams 2022/10/01 【Match Report】Japan Futsal National Team score six goals to win over Korea Republic - AFC Futsal Asian Cup™ Kuwait 2022
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