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Missed

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Japan's Yuichi Komano reacts after missing his shot in a penalty shootout against Paraguay in their World Cup second round soccer match at Loftus Versfeld stadium in Pretoria on Tuesday.

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That was so sad ;_;

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Well, he is a defender. He never scored for the last 57 games of his life and Coach Okada made him do a PK. PK are like lotteries, they never decide who is stronger, only who is luckier. Why not try coin toss?

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Samurai Blue or Leaning Tower of Pisa ?!

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Poor thing. No need for this picture at all.

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It's your fault, pal

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the weak link!

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@tmarie I agree. Is Japan going to nothing but rub it in on how they "blew it"? In the U.S. Usually when a sports team looses, the team's home fans give them a welcom home, and "we still love you" support. I wonder if these guys will get anything other then day after day of how they lost?

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@ii1980. I was at a sports pub of 100 strong Japanese supporters in the suburbs cheering and clapping for 10-15 min after losing the game in support of their team. No shame in losing especially when so many other greats really crashed out (i dont know how they can say crashed out for the samurai blue?)

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This is the most successful Japanese WC team ever and people are crying about it.

Glass half empty/full.

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@ii1980 They will get a good homecoming...All the Japanese people I have talked with this morning are still very proud of the teams accomplishments despite the loss last night. And as far as I have read and heard since the U.S. lost is what is wrong with U.S. soccer and what went wrong in this World Cup. I think Japan will be getting a much better welcome than the U.S. did as at least people in Japan will recognize them unlike the Americans that have already forgot about soccer for the next 4 years.

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Hats off to OKada and his team. Nobody expected them to get this far and they received almost no support from pundits, etc. And then they started winning..... Well done, men!

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@Sushisake they would gone further if only they choose the right person to kick

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The joy of going to penalties. 10 guys who have busted tail for 120 minutes hope they are not the player to inevitably lose the game for their team. I'm sure his teammates understand that. Hopefully the local media does, too.

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Heartbreaking to watch the poor kid after the game - he was destroyed. Even the greatest miss PKs though - it is just luck. Well done Samurai - you have shown the way for all other Asian teams to follow! They played this tournament with flair, razzle-dazzle and excitement.

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Why did Okada send this goal virgin?

It's almost as if he wanted to lose

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The match was not the best played of matches, but that is through no fault of the Blue Samurai. Komano's shot was well struck and 9 out of 10 times he probably would have hit it spot on back of the net. It was a matter of inches over 12 yeards, which was unfortunate. Japan played a tournament to make us all proud and the back four defense were truly rock and foundation on which the tournament has been succesful. There is no shame at all in japan's performance. I take my hat off to you and bow in apology for all the doubt I had pre-tournament. Well done Japan!

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somebody stole his trumpet

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I always keep asking myself why people say "back" of the net. For a goal, shouldn't the ball be "inside" the net?

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how about giving this guy a break. he has just played 120mins of football, then probably volunteered to take one of the penalties. It certainly wasnt only his fault, & he surely wasnt the weak link. better players than him have missed penalties (Baggio) @Neaojamal - not sure why you would call him a goalvirgin, If you knew your football, some of the best penalty-takers have been fullbacks & some of the more famous non-goalvirgins have missed (Baggio). And nobody wants to lose. well done Japan, you did your country & Asia proud.

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"They played this tournament with flair, razzle-dazzle and excitement"

Burakumin, are you kidding? I switched off the game at half-time because it was so boring. I can't wait for the real football - American football - to get going so I can see players start using their hands and see refs' blown calls overturned by replay.

Still, keep this Komano guy on suicide watch. "Bless his heart. He's got to be the sickest man in Japan!"

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Why did Okada send this goal virgin?

That one of the most expensive experiment he ever done so far. What`s wrong with him did he try to convince the pubic even the goalvirgins can make the score ?

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finsh best 16 just like the US. Neither country is a soccer country so for being raked 40+ in the world I suppose its nice. Ho hum, let's move on now.

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That team played in a superior form then what so many thought. I would say my hat is off to all of you.

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With all respects to Komano, he shouldn't have belonged to the execution group, because he's a defender. Don't cry, Yuichi, you've done your best.

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@ bababooey: If you don't like soccer why are you even here commenting on it. You either love soccer or you find it boring. I am afraid more people watch soccer than your coveted American Football. I am proud of Japan for getting this far.

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Still, keep this Komano guy on suicide watch. "Bless his heart. He's got to be the sickest man in Japan!"

From which university did you graduate? Your diagnosis is just brilliant.

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Sushisake and Bababoey,

This is the most successful Japanese WC team ever and people are crying about it. Glass half empty/full.

And other people who think that Japan should have been satisfied finished in this big 16 round,

I don't understand why don't you just appreciate what the team has done in the World Cup 2010. Instead of saying "this is not a soccer country anyway", or "Finished in the 16th place is way more than they deserve" or whatever, why don't you just appreciate their hard work, their efforts, the time and sweat they have spent on this biggest match of the world. I am admiring how the USA team did in this world cup, they did more than I thought they could, they played way better than the "big" teams that already have been more popular, like Italy, France, England, and so did Japan team.

And Bababooey,

I switched off the game at half-time because it was so boring. I can't wait for the real football - American football - to get going so I can see players start using their hands and see refs' blown calls overturned by replay.

I feel sorry for you, it sounds that you have never belonged to the real "football" euphoria, here in Asia, and Europe (you should understand what the real "football" terminology is, if you understand what I mean. Certainly not American football). With all respects to American football, we are talking about the "foot ball" here.

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It is said that Japan practiced PKs in anticipation of such an event. Perhaps Komano was one of the better kickers on the team. Anyway, I wish I could've seen Endo's korokoro PK. Honda was as calm as ever. Keep your head up Komano. You contributed to the 0-0 score.

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I have staunchly supported Japan thru this tournament and yes they did well and should be proud..BUT on their first 30 minutes last night they deserved to be eliminated it would have been unjust for Paraguay to be eliminated by a side who played so poorly and should never have got to a penalty shootout.

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This is the farthest they've gone into a World Cup. And against all expectations, too.

I say good job, Samurais! Otsukare sama!

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i'm so proud of my boys!!! komano has nothing to be ashamed of. he's a great defender and player of our team!!! the PKs are pretty much always based on luck, so the other team was just the lucky one last night.

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"PKs are pretty much always based on luck."

Are you mad? PKs are only a matter of luck from the goalkeeper's standpoint. When someone misses, it's a horrible oversight on their part. If you put it on goal, and goalie guesses right, then that was all a matter of luck. When you whiff, that's failure.

Why Komano is even up there is the question. The guy played in 54 international matches, he's scored 0 goals, he's a defender, and he was by far Japan's worst player up until that point in the game. He obviously was running on dead legs. Which means he's not going to be an effective shooter. Why have him shoot 3rd out of the 11 players on the field? If you were going to have a defender shoot, why not Tanaka, who scored 4 goals in 15 matches playing for Japan?

Fire Okada.

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Kawashima gave away the last PK, he didn't wait till the last moment, he did a good world cup but the goal against the Netherlands was also his fault.

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The real crushing sin is this: This was Japan's best chance to go to the semis by far, and just like the US, they've blown it. Awaiting the winner of this match was the winner of Spain/Portugal, two sides who are notorious chokers on the big scene, and both of them had shown signs of weakness in the first round. The US just had to beat Ghana, and then they would face Uruguay, who they would have been slight underdogs to take down.

Because of the way Okada chose to build his squad, he built a really old team. Here are the ages of the squad, in order of how well they played this tournament:

Keisuke Honda: 24 (28 next Cup) Eiji Kawashima: 27 (31 next Cup, but early 30s is ok for a Goalkeeper.) Marcus Tulio Tanaka: 29 (33 next Cup) Yuki Abe: 28 (32 next Cup) Daisuke Matsui: 29 (33 next Cup) Yasuhito Endo: 30 (34 next Cup) Makoto Hasebe: 26 (30 next Cup) Yoshito Okubo: 28 (32 next Cup) Yuto Nagatomo: 23 (27 next Cup) Yuji Nakazawa: 32 (36 next Cup) Yuichi Komano: 28 (32 next Cup)

Look at that list. Who's old enough to take the experience they gained from this cup and roll it into a successful campaign in 4 years? Honda, Kawashima, and maybe Hasebe. So, next year, instead of having a mix of seasoned vets, and young standouts, you're going to have (maybe) 3 vets, and 8 greenhorns with limited international experience. That's a perfect setup for being bounced in the Group Stage. What's worse is that Japan was one of the few sides that actually looked like they had figured out the ball.

So they had a favorable draw. They had the an advantage with the ball, and they also had the advantage of playing with emerging stars that the other sides wouldn't have been able to properly scout the tendencies of. And all that's gone. Honda's not going to surprise anyone next Cup. You've seen how many goals world class players have scored when their opponents view them as the main threat. (Kaka, Lionel Messi, and Christiano Ronaldo have combined for 0 goals.)

Japan should feel much like the US should feel. They should feel like proud that their team showed that they belong, and at the same time, they should feel a lot of remorse knowing that they squandered the best opportunity they've ever had, and will likely get for a long, long time. And when that realization comes around, you'd better start looking for a new coach.

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daisan: Um, Kawashima blocked that PK against the Netherlands. He wasn't supposed to do that. That was all luck. Sure, he didn't hold on to it, but I don't think I've ever seen a low PK blocked without a rebound.

He did seem to move too early on the last 3 PKs, but once Komano missed, he knew that he HAD to get a save. (And he would have saved the 2nd if he just got there a tenth of a second quicker.) I'm guessing he just decided to try and guess a little earlier. It didn't work out for him, but, honestly, that's the way PKs are supposed to go. The shooter has EVERY advantage.

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Kawashima blocked a PK against Denmark, in the goal against The Netherlands I guess you can blame the ball instead.

I know you are only mentioning the starting eleven but there are young players like Okazaki, Uchida and Morimoto. And many more who didn't make it to the WC but have been called to the national team like Kagawa (Dortmund), Koroki, Kashiwagi. Sure they lack experience but they always will unless they go to Europe.

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daisan: My mistake. :) But as for only naming the starting 11, you don't really learn as a sub, even if you do get in the game. You have to prepare to win most games in the first 45 minutes, not steal them in the last 30. So Okazaki will likely be back, but he's still going to be green. You need players who have WC experience. Germany, for example, is going to be tough to beat for many years. The US on the other hand, have a lot of players that could be good next WC, but they're coming in untested, and that's not a recipe for success. Japan suffers from the same roster difficulties now.

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I was happy Japan lost!

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choke city.......komano u suck:(

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Are you mad? PKs are only a matter of luck from the goalkeeper's standpoint. When someone misses, it's a horrible oversight on their part.

i can ask you the same question. the players are under so much pressure during the PKs. even people like maradona have missed PKs before.

choke city.......komano u suck:(

what gives you the right to say that? you probably haven't even kicked a soccer ball in your life...psh!

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kicked a couple of cats but never a soccer ball, regardless.....komano choked and he let his country down to the ground......ouch:(

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I totally agree with Spitz2007. When Okada took out Okubo in the 106' he should have brought Nakamura Shunsuke and let him take a PK instead of Komano. Komano played bad and was struggling the entire game showing no self confidence. It's a bad call to let players in such a condition take a PK.

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"I was happy Japan lost!"

Good for you. Finally there's something you can be happy about.

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they should of put the shot not only of komano, but the whole teams faces. ^^

I was sad Japan lost, i wanted them to make it through.

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"I was happy Japan lost!" Good for you. Finally there's something you can be happy about.

haha seriously. what a sad life.

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"i can ask you the same question. the players are under so much pressure during the PKs. even people like maradona have missed PKs before."

Oh, boo hoo, pressure. The ability to deal with pressure is why those guys are picked. Hitting a PK is like hitting a free throw in basketball. It's something you can do with your eyes closed if you've put in the work. Sometimes great shooters miss free throws in clutch situations, but that is NOT a matter of LUCK. It's a matter of letting nerves get to you.

Yeah, Maradona missed. So did Baggio, and all of England is terrified of PKs. But you know what? Nobody in their home country said, "Oh well, that's just bad luck." They called out every single one of those guys when they missed and told them that they failed. Because they did. The penalty kick is literally the easiest scoring opportunity in all of soccer. That's why they award it situations where you were basically denied an excellent shot at goal.

Stopping a PK, however, is mostly luck. The ball's so close, that you basically don't have time to react. You have to guess right and commit, or hope the other guy chokes, and kicks the ball weakly before you've committed.

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I am with spitz2007.

Those guys are selected because they can handle the pressure, same as most professional out there(regardless of profession).

The best worker/sportsman is useless if his performance crumbles under pressure.

Most of the top-guys/earners I know work best under intense pressure.

HTH.

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kisekicaroline: Why can't I root for Paraguay?

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kisekicaroline: Why can't I root for Paraguay?

i never said you can't root for paraguay. you sounded classless saying that you were happy that japan lost. i would never go on a forum for the denmark team and say, "i'm so happy denmark lost!!! sucks to be you!!!" you could've said that you were happy for the paraguay team because you were rooting for them.

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I live in the Netherlands and I'm half dutch but I rooted for Japan all the time! I really thought that they would win the penalty's I even.. prayed XD? But they lost ;( Oh well.. They've become much stronger compared to the past FIFA WC's. Everyone here told me I was foolish when I said that I rooted for Japan rather than my own country XD

Btw we've won against brasil: 2-1 XD That was kind of a shocker.. XD

I became deaf of all the yelling and screaming and vuvuzela's here XD

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