U-22 Japan National Team score 9 goals in win over Jamaica - KIRIN CHALLENGE CUP 2019
29 December 2019
On Saturday 28 December, the U-22 Japan National Team faced the U-22 Jamaica National Team at the KIRIN CHALLENGE CUP 2019 played in Transcosmos Stadium Nagasaki.
In the final match of the year for the Japan National Team, coach MORIYASU Hajime started YAMAGUCHI Louis Takaji Julien (Extremadura UD) in goal, with the defence line of IWATA Tomoki (Oita Trinita), OKAZAKI Makoto (FC Tokyo), and SEKO Ayumu (Cerezo Osaka). While MATSUMOTO Taishi (Sanfrecce Hiroshima) and NAKAYAMA Yuta (PEC Zwolle) were named as the defensive midfielders, NAGANUMA Yoichi (Ehime FC) and HIGASHI Shunki (Sanfrecce Hiroshima) were positioned in the flanks. It was MAEDA Daizen (CS Maritimo) who was named as the lone striker, with ABE Hiroki (FC Barcelona) and HATATE Reo (Juntendo University) playing beneath him.
The match started with Japan showing great aggression from the early minutes, as the team showed quick ball movements to create opportunities upfront. The opening goal was scored by the team captain Nakayama, when he scored a direct free kick in the fifth minute.
With momentum on their side, Japan took full control over the match, as Hatate converted a cross delivered by Matsumoto in the 16th minute to make it 2-0. Just a minute later, Maeda connected with a cross sent by Naganuma to score the third goal. With Hatate marking his second goal of the match in the 19th minute, Abe converted a penalty kick in the 28th minute to make it 5-0 before halftime.
Japan continued to carry their momentum in the second half, as Higashi’s cross sailed into the goal in the 51st minute to resume the goal spree. With coach Moriyasu utilising his substitutions effectively, the Japanese squad went onto score three more goals, as ICHIMI Kazunari (Kyoto Sanga FC), MITOMA Kaoru (University of Tsukuba), and IWASAKI Yuto (Hokkaido Consadole Sapporo) each scored a goal to give Japan a 9-0 victory.
Following the match, coach Moriyasu mentioned, “The players actively challenged themselves during the training sessions to prepare for this match. Each player managed to showcase their full potential while communicating with their teammates.” The coach continued to praise his players by saying, “Following our match against Colombia in November, the players made great adjustments to play aggressively and showed great determination to win this match.”
Team captain Nakayama also shared his take on the match, “While we are still work in progress as a team, we managed to stay on the same page from the beginning of the match to earn this victory.” Ahead of next month’s AFC U-23 Championship, Nakayama shared his aspiration, “It is important how we improve ourselves from here on.”
With the conclusion of this match, the U-22 Japan National Team will conclude their activity for this year, before restarting ahead of next month’s AFC U-23 Championship in Thailand.
Coach and Players' Comments
MORIYASU Hajime, Coach of U-22 Japan National Team
It turned out to be a lopsided match, but this result came as a result of our players actively challenging themselves during the training sessions to prepare for this match. Following our match in November, the players did well to make the adjustments to play aggressively from the beginning of the match and showcased great improvements from the previous match. This U-22 Japan National Team is a team striving towards the Tokyo Olympic Games. The fact that we conducted our matches at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the only two cities in the world affected by the atomic bomb, has great significance ahead of the festival of peace. We are only able to play football because we have peace and we are grateful to be able to send out the message of world peace through our matches.
DF #3 NAKAYAMA Yuta (PEC Zwolle)
While we are still work in progress as a team, we managed to stay on the same page from the beginning of the match to earn this victory. However, it is important how we improve ourselves from here on, so we must reset our minds ahead of our next goal. I was able to strike the ball with confidence, and I think that mentality enabled me to score that goal.
MF #10 ABE Hiroki (FC Barcelona)
Our team was surrounded by a positive vibe from the beginning of the match, and I think we were able to really enjoy this match. This result was only made possible with the support of many people, so I am very grateful for everyone who has supported us. Each player was able to share their own opinion and we really managed to communicate with each other. We were able to apply aggressive pressure from the front line only because we were all on the same page.
MF #11 HATATE Reo (Juntendo University)
The fact that we were kept scoreless in our match against Colombia had really got me thinking, and it was great that we were able to prove that we are capable of scoring goals. In both scenes where I scored the goals, Maeda made a great run towards the near post to distract the defenders. His runs enabled me to receive the ball unmarked and score those goals, so I am thankful for his work.
MF #14 HIGASHI Shunki (Sanfrecce Hiroshima)
I wasn’t feeling very nervous. We all entered the match with the intention to play aggressively and it worked out perfectly. I was able to time myself well to assist that goal. I was also able to deliver a decent cross towards the far post in that free kick and I am glad I was able to record my first goal.
U-22 Japan National Team vs U-22 Jamaica National Team
Date: Sat. 28 December 2019 19:20
Venue: Transcosmos Stadium Nagasaki, Nagasaki
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