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SAMURAI BLUE arrive in Doha, Qatar

04 September 2021

SAMURAI BLUE arrive in Doha, Qatar

Following their 0-1 loss to the Oman National Team at the final round of the AFC Asian qualifiers (Road to Qatar), the SAMURAI BLUE (Japan National Team) made their way to Doha, Qatar, where they will face the China PR National Team.

The team departed Osaka at 3 a.m. and landed in Doha around 8 a.m. after an 11 hour flight on Friday 3 September. The players and staffs were then transported to their hotel, where they tested for COVID-19 and waited for the test results. After a 10 hour wait, it was confirmed that all test results came back negative, and although restrictions still applied, the players were free to step out of their hotel room to communicate with their teammates.

The time was already past 21:30, leaving no time for the team to hold a training session, so the players individually worked out at the hotel’s gym. Some recovered their conditions with cardio workout, while some spent their time lifting weights.

The SAMURAI BLUE will start their team training in Doha on Saturday 4 September, before facing the China PR National Team on Tuesday 7.

Players’ Comments

DF TOMIYASU Takehiro (Arsenal/England)
It felt like we were playing passively from the start. We were playing not to make mistakes and lacked aggression. We weren’t able to showcase our usual football. That is why we need to challenge ourselves and fight with aggression in our next match. There is not much to think about, we just need to keep it simple and try to execute what we have always done. We need to keep that in mind from the training sessions and prepare ourselves both mentally and physically. As I said, we just need to execute what we have been doing in the past, so I will focus on fulfilling my own duty when I step on the pitch.

MF MORITA Hidemasa (CD Santa Clara/Portugal)
The pitch condition was not ideal in the match against Oman. We were not able to showcase our usual football while we allowed our opponent to execute their game plan. It felt like each player was not able to fulfil their duty. We also made uncharacteristic mistakes, which cannot be tolerated. Therefore, we must first focus on our own job and execute our given tasks. We are in a must win situation now, so I hope to provide a positive vibe to the team when I step on the pitch. It is hard to connect passes in the centre and down the line when facing stronger opponents. In order to realise the quick offence we are striving for, someone has to be in position to draw attention of the defenders and force them to allocate numbers to fill the gap. We also need to be in good position off the ball, so that when we lose possession of the ball, we can make quick transition to our defensive shape. In that sense, how we position ourselves in offence can improve the quality of our defence.

AFC Asian Qualifiers【Road to Qatar】

Tue. 7 September 2021 [24:00] *Subject to change
SAMURAI BLUE vs China PR National Team
Match venue: Khalifa International Stadium (Doha)

Match Information

  • 朝日新聞
  • 大東建託
  • Family Mart
  • au
  • Mizuho
  • MS&AD
  • Toyo Tire Corporation
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