soccer

Japan's soccer coach denies team lacks passion

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“Tomorrow’s game is going to be very tough and I’m sure we’ll play with determination, don’t worry about that.”

Same old, same old. All the "determination" and "ganbatte" in the world is not going to close the large physical skill level difference that exists between the top world teams, and the second tier. And Japan is clearly in that second tier. Being small and fast is of no advantage when your opponent is big, and faster, and can counter-attack off a Japanese error before you can blink. Japan does play a very disciplined game, no doubt. But it is not a match for, or as enjoyable to watch as "The Beautiful Game".

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

We continue to hear about coach Javier Aquirre of the Blue Samurai and his bulldog style and tough talk. So has he been able to talk the talk and walk the walk? Results is what counts. So far it doesn't look good. However it's the final that counts. The proof is in the pudding. Only time will tell if he's the real deal.

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enjoyable to watch as "The Beautiful Game".

Brazil's style was different in the last World Cup. They sometimes played with 5 defenders (yet in the end, they still conceded so many goals).

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Yeap, sadly, I agree with jersey b. on this as well.

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@jerseyboy

"All the "determination" and "ganbatte" in the world is not going to close the large physical skill level difference "

So what's your suggestion then, genius ?

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It has nothing to do with passion or commitment. It is a more basic problem that Japanese players are not trained how to properly used their bodies from young so they lack the agility in their hips to go hard at the opposition players and quickly get the ball back when they lose it. Watch Kagawa closely and you will see how he is terrible at defending. So instead they delay and retreat, which makes it seem like they lack passion.

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Man, I love the Japanese women national teams: soccer, volleyball, softball, and some of the the individual int'l competition athletes. They fight and scrap and despite being smaller or slower or whatever criticisms people throw at J-athletes, they do it with passion.

Outside of baseball and maybe individuals in figure skating and in gymnastics, the men's teams are generally weak. Men's soccer seems listless, men's volleyball team simply lacks the good coaching that teaches heart and scrappy play, and that's it.

I'm not gonna go into outside of sports, but within sports, the women, all they have is this competition. No chance of lucrative pro deals or a chance to be a TV talent (yes, there are some retired female athletes who are commentators, but on J-TV, they seem to use a marathon runner to talk about gymnastics and or all sports, or they have the male athlete version talk with a cute random female co-host).

I'd try and hire the nadeshiko Japan coach and sack Aguirre. I've got plenty of Mexican friends from my days in LA, and no one likes this guy and I have no reason why they chose him out of every candidate, including coaches in-house, from Japan.

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"Being small and fast is of no advantage"

Leo. Messi.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

dave

But a team of eleven with Messi' build? That wouldn't work, and I think that's jerseyboy's point.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

They're not playing without passion, they're just playing without talent or ability. Doesn't matter the coach, obviously. Let's hope the guy gets rid of Honda in the next rotation, anyway. A few less fans around the net will get free soccer balls, but still.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Mr smith, I guess you do not know that Honda is the top scorer on AC Milan this season as well as second on the team in assists.

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@USN

But a team of eleven with Messi' build? That wouldn't work, and I think that's jerseyboy's point.

The great Barca side that beat your lot in the champions league final at Wembley were almost that (Gerard Pique the notable exception), but yeah, I admit small goalkeepers are a major problem. Also defenders on corners and free-kicks, but then again Maya Yoshida is well above 6'' tall and plays regularly in the EPL, so a team of players with Messi's build isn't what Japan actually has.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japan don't lack passion. They lack quality.

@Smith Dropping Honda would rob Japan of one of the few players with quality capable of changing a game. Your pathological hatred of Honda is a strange one. Who would you replace him with? Please don't answer 'anybody'. A name please.

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‘’Hide SuzukiOct. 14, 2014 - 01:15PM JST @jerseyboy "All the "determination" and "ganbatte" in the world is not going to close the large physical skill level difference " So what's your suggestion then, genius ?’’

First remove celebrity seeking mentality from the game, or better yet, sink the Kurobune and turn the whole thing into a purely internal affair where all fans are fashion idols and all golden haired players ever triumphant heroes.

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davestrousers

Sure, Yoshida is 6'2", but he's the only one above 6'. The rest of the team, notably the defenders, are all 6' or shorter. Combine that with a slighter frame compared to foreign sides and it is indeed a problem.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Agree with warispeace. One will see the difference of Japanese/asian football to european/south american style of football. Those in europe and south play it with better styles and defenses.

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Being small

People already named Messi, but I can also bring Paul Scholes and Michael Owen (in his prime) on the table. They are not physical beasts, but they knew what they needed to do to have success.

Back on topic, Aguirre is a waste of money and time from Day 1. Looking for Japanese coaches who can control a number of egos looks tough to me, but there are foreigners with better pedigrees than Aguirre out there. How and why this man has been chosen, I don't know. What they need is a new form of team discipline and pragmatic approach to the game. For all the ties (political, cultural, etc.) between Japan and Germany, I'm surprised the JFA never went for a German coach.

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Bicultural, Jimizo: so, how'd Honda do against Brazil? My hatred of him is based on his arrogance, feelings of self-entitlement, and inflated ego thanks to a media that made him the golden boy when clearly undeserved.

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Danny Nguyen

They are not physical beasts, but they knew what they needed to do to have success.

Scholes was shorter at 5'7", but he was unique in that he more than made up for it with his ferocity in the midfield. IMO, he WAS a physical beast.

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Scholes was shorter at 5'7", but he was unique in that he more than made up for it with his ferocity in the midfield. IMO, he WAS a physical beast.

Very good point. Nevertheless, he would be quite an example to follow if I was a young Japanese footballer looking to make a mark against the best without needing a body like Zlatan's or Cristiano Ronaldo's nor hoping to have Messi's crazy dribbling skills. There is also a middle ground and it also works for smaller players.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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