Nadeshiko Japan (Japan Women's National Team short-listed squad) kick off training camp in Ishigaki toward Olympics qualifying
19 January 2016
Japan Women's National Team short-listed squad began a training camp in Ishigaki Island of Okinawa Prefecture on 18 January toward the final Asian qualifying for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics, which will be hosted in Osaka.
Due to heavy snow in the East Japan, the arrivals of the players were delayed and the practice site was changed. But they went through shuttle runs, other light stuff using the ball, and foot volleyball in an inside facility. They worked out for just over an hour in a cheerful mood. "Each one of us had her own role and we got off to a great start in a great mood", MIYAMA Aya said.
Coach SASAKI Norio said, "today was the start for us to take a good start in the qualifying. While we look to raise our condition, we would like to improve our issues and be on the same page with the entire players. The final Asian qualifying will be played in a six-team round robin format and each team will play five games all at once. Japan doesn't have much time left until their first game against Australia on 29 February at Kincho Stadium.
For forward ANDO Kozue, who hurt herself in the first game in last year's FIFA Women's World Cup and was forced to be out of the global stage afterwards, it's the first national team event in seven months. "I was able to overcome my rehabs with support from so many people. It's the strength of Nadeshiko Japan to play as one. I know that competing for the two spots in Asia will be tough, but we want to polish our quality not wasting any given day", Ando said in a positive tone.
The average temperature is around 17 degrees in Ishigaki in January. As the training camp would start there, coach Sasaki held a football clinic for 57 girls from elementary, junior high and high schools of the city on the 17th, one day before the camp kicked off. Under the support of Ishigaki City and the Yaeyama football association and in the great environments, the Japan team will work on their training in the next eight days.
MF MIYAMA Aya (Okayama Yunogo Belle)
There's only one thing for us to do here, which is to play for the team and Japan. I believe that all of us have been here with the mindset. We have the right to go for it, so in order to earn a ticket for the Olympics and to win get a chance to aim at winning an Olympic gold medal for one more time, we've got to do what we're supposed to do. You can't just be a strong, good team, but you've also got to be able to play as a team. I know if we can't do that, we are not going to win the championship. We would like to proceed, talking to each other and balancing up with the entire group.
DF NORIMATSU RUKA (Urawa Reds Ladies)
I'm playing at Reds, trying to get myself involved for scoring plays. I would like to not get too nervous and boldly join our attacks with confidence. Defensively, I would like to win every 1-on-1 situations. I want to do my best so I can fit in this team with my own football.
|Mon. 18 January
|Wed. 20 January
|Thu. 21 January
|Fri. 22 January
|Sat. 23 January
|Sun. 24 January
|Mon. 25 January
|AM or PM (tbd)
*The schedule is subject to change due to the team condition, the weather, etc.
Women's Olympic Football Tournament Rio 2016 - Asian Qualifiers Final Round
29 February 2016 - 9 March 2016
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