soccer

Japan faces host Qatar in Asian Cup quarterfinals

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Saudi Arabia is a gulf heavyweight?! With three humiliating losses to their name featherweight would be more appropriate. And with Japan just getting out of jail in their other two games it is a brave commentator who talks up their chances. The big test will come when they meet Korea or Australia

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I would say just 1 of those 3 losses was humiliating. Besides, it's kind of funny to see that the most successful team in Asian Cup history, who qualified for the World Cup four consecutive times, is named "featherweight" based on 3 games in just 1 week. Rich!!

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Peaceful Man is right. Saudi Arabia might win their share of games in the VERY weak Asian tournaments, but anyone remember the 8-0 drubbing Germany gave them in Sapporo back in 2002? the only reason they make it to the World Cup is someone has to from Asia..

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hoserfella, read the article again. It says "Gulf heavyweight". Not "World heavyweight". Calling Saudi Arabia a featherweight in the Gulf area is ridiculous.

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roomtemperature - Read my post again. calling them any kind of "heavyweight" is a stretch. One Asian cup since 1988 in a weak field. 'nuff said.

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Let's define "Gulf region", hoserfella. Because for some reason you refuse to see that THAT is what the article is about (concerning Saudi Arabia). We're talking here about countries like Kuwait, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrein, UAE and Oman. Now, every region (or continent) has its "heavyweight". And in THIS region, being it weak or not weak, Saudi Arabia is one of them (with Iran). Again, as the article stated! And as I stated!! The GULF REGION, hoserfella!!!

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Besides, since 1988 you say? Yeah, 'nuff said.

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Let's see if there are any Whistles of the Middle East in this upcoming match...

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The Saudis were considered the big boys of Asia for a time, and qualified for a few world cups if my memory is correct. They used to import a lot of pacy, skillful Africans into the national team, but I think they are on the slide nowadays.

Qatar could be a challenge for Japan- The Samurai should expect wake up calls at their hotel at 2AM; the coach driver getting "lost" for an hour whilst driving to the stadium; dodgy food; sledging by locals...etc. Still expect Japan to put 4 or 5 goals past Qatar though. The Socceroos have a tougher assignment against the champs, Iraq - that should be a good game to watch. Revenge time for the Aussies...

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roomtemp - thanks for the geography update. Still, you haven't explained why they should be called heavyweights. Because they are rich? A physically large country? It isn't because of success on the pitch, so I guess you'd better re-think your argument here..

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The match will be shown live on Asahi Television group stations at 10:20pm, as far as I can tell.

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Timtak is correct - TV coverage begins at 10:20pm and is scheduled until 12:30. The game will be hosted by Matsuki and Nanami.

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I know this is a long way down the road, but has anybody anywhere noticed or commented on the ridiculous fact that by giving the WC to Qatar and planning to play every game in the evening because of the heat, Japan, Australia, and basically all of East Asia were given the shaft by FIFA. Every single game of the whole tournament will be played in the middle of the night here, and it will be close to impossible to either be awake or find the time to watch recorded games before you hear the results. Thanks a lot Sepp. I am kind of hoping for a really poor performance by Qatar tonight just because that, it would point out again what an absurd decision they made.

As for Japan, it might just come down to the strikers. Defense and midfield have looked good, but as always with Japan, somebody has to put the ball in the net.

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room temperature. Yes Let's define teh region as the Gulf Region. This region is covered under the West Asian Football Federaton which has 13 national association members, Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Qatar,Saudi Arabia, Syria and the United Arab Emirates and Yemen. Every two years they host the West Asian Football Federation Championship, which was first held in 2000. Results can be found on web, but NEVER have saudi made the final four. The Powerhouses of the Gulf region are really Iran and Syria, not Saudi Arabia.

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Qatar have had two consecutive shutouts and I'd expect a tough game for Japan, but they should nick it by the odd goal. After the last game though, it might be a shock to the system to play against defenders who mark-up and don't leave gaping 10m-wide channels to run into.

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Uuuhmmm....magpie, if I may. This story about the West Asian Football Federation Championship is very nice.....BUT......Saudi Arabia NEVER participated!!! Actually, they only became a member in 2010. Do some homework before you post, will you?

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Qatar apparently has a population of 1.6 million or less than 1% of japan. Staggering to think about...

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roomtemp - Since you claim to be an expert on Gulf Region football, could you explain why such a powerhouse failed to reach the quarterfinals of the Asian Cup (you still haven't given an opinion on the 1 title since '88 thing, so I'll let that one slide)

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Thanks for the heads-up about game time, 3REN and Timtak.

Qatar’s coach Bruno Metsu heaped praise on Japan as the “Barcelona of Asia”

Japan is more the Shanghai of Asia.

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I'll watch the game... I just hope it's not a yawn-fest.

If there is one thing this tournament proves, though, is that there are almost no good teams in 'Asia', and that the actual choosing process for the teams that get to participate in the World Cup is completely skewed and ridiculous.

I wish both teams the best of luck. A win for Qatar would be MASSIVE given they are hosting the cup in the future, while a loss to Japan would be devastating. On the other hand, a win for Japan would be a big boost, while a loss for Qatar not an incredibly huge upset.

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i feel that japan will win against qatar and eventually win the asian cup.

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Woeful refereeing will likely cost Japan this game. 2-1 Qat now, Japan to 10 men. Attrocious Japanese goalie too - looked like he tried to stop the 2nd goal from WITHIN his own net!

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NIPPON RED CARD!!! Qatar GOAL!!!

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Well Smith that was anything but a yawn-fest! Great spirit and professionalism again from Japan.

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Great game! Congrats to Samurai Japan for that victory.

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Great game to watch - lets all hope the Aussie - Iraq game tomorrow night (same time) is another cracker. Also hope for better refereeing - and that Schwarzer performs better than that Kawashima guy - what a howler of a performance!

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Great work Japan. Shinji Kawaga proved why he is such a hit in Europe - that was a stellar display from him.

Japan have got to stop doing it the hard way, but they look pretty steely in their determination to get the job done at the minute. Congrats, and looking forward to the semi.

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