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U-22 Japan National Team in final preparations ahead of meeting with Uzbekistan on Qatar, UAE trip

13 December 2015

U-22 Japan National Team in final preparations ahead of meeting with Uzbekistan on Qatar, UAE trip

With one more day before an international friendly against the U-22 Uzbekistan National Team, the U-22 Japan National Team held a practice session from 11:30 in the morning.

The temperature was 30.1 degrees C. The players started their practice with passing and controlling under strong sunshine and dry air at 23%-humidity. Then they were divided into attack and defence to do some function training, which they have been focusing on during this trip, followed by a mini game on a half-length pitch.

They moved onto checking set pieces in 6-on-4 and 5-on-7 formations to finish the last practice session of this trip. The players showed determined intensive plays on the pitch in preparation for the coming final qualifiers, while the coach TEGURAMORI as well as the staff encouraged them strongly during the session.

The team will meet Uzbekistan on Sunday 13 December, which will be a touchstone for the final qualifiers. They must improve the areas they found in the match against Yemen – the accuracy of shots, and show the responsibility of playing for Japan.

Coach and Players' Comments

TEGURAMORI Makoto, Coach
The team definitely have a united aim – "playing together to beat Uzbekistan". As we didn’t play in a detailed manner in the second half against Yemen, we focused on practicing the build-up today. I told the players that we cannot win easily against any team, and one of our teammates (NOTSUDA Gakuto) unfortunately picked up an injury. We must play as a united team, regardless of who starts the game and who stays on the bench, in order to achieve our aim. We’d like to claim a victory, so that we can bring positive news with hope back Japan.

DF  NISHINO Takaharu (Gamba Osaka)
It’s been two years since this team was assembled, and I believe the players all understand what kind of football the coach wants us to play. With one month to go before the final qualifying round, we focus on practice sessions and matches well, so that we can book a place in the Olympics. There is a good atmosphere around the team, and each player has a strong spirit.

We have earned an advantage for the final qualifiers by experiencing the pitch conditions, transport, and meals during this trip. I’d like to get myself into perfect physical condition. I faced this trip with a strong wish to stay in the team for the final qualifiers and showed off all I had in practice sessions and matches. In the game against Yemen, I focused on risk management against the opponent’s counter-attacks, thinking of keeping possession longer for Japan.

As we tied the game despite our goal-scoring opportunities, we need to improve the ability to win properly for the final qualifiers. I’d like to work on it in the remaining time.

MF  OHSHIMA Ryota (Kawasaki Frontale)
It was good preparation to experience the same environment during this trip as the final qualifiers. Now I know how long it takes by bus from the hotel to the pitch, and understand how to get myself ready for the coming match. Personally, I always focus on the best choice for the team to win a match, and I have been working on improving the accuracy of shots during this trip, as we found out that was one of our issues in the match against Yemen.

Although we defended well against Yemen, we felt too rushed in attack. As we have 90 minutes, I’d like to be a little more relaxed, with more variations in plays, against Uzbekistan.

MF  IDEGUCHI Yosuke (Gamba Osaka)
I joined this team for the first time on the Thailand and Bangladesh trip last December. I think we share tactics both in attack and defence much better than back then. It was an excellent opportunity to see practice grounds, pitches, and the hotel, which we will use for the final qualifiers. So I believe we are preparing ourselves very well. I’d like to showcase my strengths – intercepting the ball and play closely to the ball.


Mon. 7 December PM Training
Tue. 8 December AM Training
Wed. 9 December AM Training
Thu. 10 December 0-0 International Friendly Match vs U-22 Yemen National Team
(@Grand Hamad Stadium)
Fri. 11 December PM Training
Sat. 12 December AM Training
Sun. 13 December 16:30 International Friendly Match vs U-22 Uzbekistan National Team
(@Thiyab Amana Stadium)
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