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World Cup warm-up

25 Comments

Japan's Makoto Hasebe, left, battles South Korea's Park Ji Sung during their Kirin Cup international friendly soccer match in Saitama on Monday night. South Korea won 2-0. See story here.

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Not a surprising result.

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I don't know if it is bashing, but holy hell Japan can't pass worth a damn. And is it just me or is Nakamura Shunsuke way overrated? I know he is good at free kicks, or is it he just doesn't have anybody else around him. I like Honda, he plays a more physical game, but without support he can't get anything done. I fear Japan will be three and out in South Africa.

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Japan were absolutely abysmal against South Korea. Probably the worst Japanese team to embark upon a World Cup - and definately their most laughably out-of-his-depth manager. Sack Okada and put a European in already! Okada reminds me of Hatoyama - always looking depressed and apologising for his incompetence.

And just quietly, Australia were no better tonight either - somehow scraping a 2-1 win against NZ.

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Okada is a failure and should quit before he adds the WC to his list of recent epic failures. I said to my GF that Japan will not touch goal and that STH Korea will smash them. Morimoto and Honda who are very excellent Europe based players looked totally lost out there. Okada and the JFA are to blame for their LDP/DPJ style of running a football team. Unless you have a great player with awesome courage like the JP baseball team has in Ichiro, then the team is rudderless and cannot win unless they play 100000000000% inferior opponents.

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I wouldn't say the guy in the pick is 'battling' with the South Korean so much as he is fouling. I can understand though, given how badly they sucked and how they lost; Japan must feel pretty lousy losing to their 'rivals' like that. But given Japan's performance over the last few years, they don't actually deserve the title of 'rivals'; South Korea dominates them every time.

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Japan needs a total revamp: a European/South American coaching from today on, 18 y.o. real talented players brought from base teams. The way they are playing, they could lose to an all-women soccer team, or actually, to my BF's street-soccer team.

Burakumin: all national temams playing friendlies are not doing their best. Who wants to get injured in a friendly 2 weeks before the real thing? Watch England vs Mexico tonight, they will very likeky drink tea and have some nachos while touching the ball.

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I see what you are saying, LostinNagoya - but we can be certain Japan did not want to lose to South Korea, of all teams - at home. That is not really the ideal send-off to South Africa! They looked devastated after the game. Our Aussie boys were fighting for places in the squad and didn't hold back - there were a few atrocious tackles in that game - one of which should have seen Timmy Cahill marched if it wasn't a "friendly".

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Friend slap to the face

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LostinNagoya: "all national temams playing friendlies are not doing their best."

I guarantee that at least until that first goal, when everyone's hearts sank, Japan was probably playing the best it can give; they always tend to do their best against SK rivals, be it baseball, soccer, or even figure skating now. There's no way they weren't trying their guts out, and the same is sure for South Korea, although clearly they don't need to put in quite as much effort as the Japanese side does to whip them. If it were any nation besides SK I would agree, but in this case I don't.

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Yep, unfortunately Japan were pretty dire. Great non-stop singing from the fans though, even at 2-0 down and one minute to go.

At one point the commentators joked that the referee, being English, probably couldn't tell the Koreans from the Japanese. Idiots!

The look on the face of the Kirin boss has he had to pose with the winning Korean captain was priceless.

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hachmike66 I disagree. There was some superb passing by the Japanese team: right into the arms of the Korean keeper every time.

What a miserable line-up they've got for the World Cup this time 'round. And Okada as head coach, ugh! Is this really the best Japan can do?

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At one point the commentators joked that the referee, being English, probably couldn't tell the Koreans from the Japanese. Idiots!

I'd better point out that they were Japanese TV commentators in case it seemed like it was a joke made on British TV ( which would lead to instant dismissal of course...)

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Buraku, Smith: I didn't watch the match, but I believe Japanese players really tried their best, playing home et all. But I just read that Argentina will not use 5 top-players against Canada tonight, to validade what I wrote. I guess what really made the difference for SK was the experience their players got by playing abroad. Well, I am happy I am not a Japanese soccer fan this Monday, eheh. It must be horrible to see the team that represents your country losing, losing and losing.

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LostinNagoya: The thing is that it DOESN'T validate what you were saying because you are still not taking the rivalry between the two nations into account. You can't compare a game between Argentina and CANADA (not even in the WC) with a game between SK and Japan. Can you tell me which of their best WC players sat out of this game?

Anyway, I agree with taiko that the commentating was ludicrous. The commentators were right, though, if the English refs couldn't tell the difference between the Japanese and Koreans (ie. losers vs. winners), it would be a problem. I guess they have to crack stupid jokes about something though, losing as their team was.

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Ok, Smith, I believe you because you watched the match. I didn't. Are you Japanese? You are steaming, man. Take it easy, lol. Anyway I wrote about players not playing their best in response to Burakumin's post about Australia vz New Zealand. Not about Japan vs SKorea.

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I hope Japan can get it together in the very short time before the World Cup but I have my doubts. When I first saw the divisions I had some hope that Japan might do ok but not the way they're playing.

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Japan team is a hopeless under this useless coach who directs the team in "amakudari style". This isn't another corp, Okada, WAKE UP!!! This is football. My guess tonight before the match was three to nothing in favour of Korea side, but "lucky" Japan narrowly escaped that shame.

Shunsuke, Endo, Nagatomo and Hasegawa plus their goalie were there for the reasons better known to Okada only. Anybody who watched the match in its entirity would confess that the last 10 mins Japan side was very offensive, with Morimoto leading the attacks. Why did not Okada unleash this kid to work with Honda from minute One!!!??

This was their last "peer" match. As someone noted above, this team is not a world class team. well said

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guess a lot of japanese cried after the match

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Not good, not good at all.

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taiko666 -- gotta disagree about the non-stop signing. The never-ending "Nippon, Nippon, Nippon, Nippon" is just mind deadening. I'm looking forward to the games in South Africa simply because that won't be a factor, and I can get decent announcers on the sub-channel. And, as others have said Japan looked terrible and Okada is clueless. My prediction of 0 and 3 in the World Cup is looking even better.

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this team sux! the coach sux, too. J teams just dont have the passion or the ball z to play a contact sport like soccer. other teams are gonna push you around, grab your jersey and tackle you hard. when do you ever see J players do that??? they are so into their fundamentals here, dribbling the ball, free kicks and all that other important stuff you need to be a good player, but they forgot to teach how to grow a set be aggressive. where is this element of their game and why is it left out of their strategy time and time again.

they've got no heart and so like all the world cups past, i see no possibility of a win for japan in south africa. good luck boys, cuz boys are just what you are. come back in 4 years, when you realize that it takes men to compete, although i doubt you will come to that revelation any time soon

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"friendly soccer match"

Are there unfriendly soccer matches?

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This game was horrid. Japanese can't even pass a ball. And Honda, what an overrated player he is. Trying to score like van Basten. Nah this team and coach are horrible. Coach needs to go and the team needs to be refreshed.

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The result brought a smile to my face. The media here always goes on about how Japan have a good chance of doing well in the WC or even winning it, so results like this are nice.

What does Okada have to do to get fired?

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Japan has gone from being able to pass but not score to being able to do neither.

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