world cup

Asia seeks better World Cup results in 2022 in Qatar

13 Comments
By Talek HARRIS

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© 2018 AFP

©2018 GPlusMedia Inc.

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There is no reason why Japan can’t produce better and better and teams in the future. Interest in the sport is growing rapidly, training facilities are good and the JFA is well funded. Japanese players are now entrenched in the world’s top leagues, they are valued for their professionalism and technical ability. And with a massive population, there should be plenty to choose from. Also, most Japanese players grow up learning to play on the standard gravel ‘undojo’. Ideally there would be more grass pitches, but for some reason Japan just doesn’t seem to do grass very well! The benefit of this however is that it learning to play on the undojo helps players to focus on ball control and technique, as well as stayingon your feet instead of always going to ground. Johan Cryuff attributed much of his skill to having grown up playing on bobbly schoolyards and streets.

However, Japan needs to get over its inferiority complex; they seem eager to blame defeat on the size & physicality of their opponents, or their footballing heritage. A country with the resources Japan has no real excuse for footballing failure.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

As much as I see the youth of Japan talk about and spend endless hours upon hours playing or practicing the sport, you would think they would be much better at the sport on the world stage. If Japan can do it in baseball, why not soccer?

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If Japan can do it in baseball, why not soccer?

Japanese baseball league is on a different level than Japanese soccer. Baseball is a national sport with very high skilled players. So new younger players can easily get hands on training from the pros in the sport within japan once they have the chance to move up.

However Japanese soccer's level is not as high as its European and South American counterparts. Yes you can become good but even Honda, Kagawa and Nagatomo were only so good until they joined top European soccer clubs and became extremely skilled over there learning from the pros. So unless Japan imports some of that talent to Japan or manages to get soccer players to play over there, the younger generation will never be able to get that skilled.

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If Japan can do it in baseball, why not soccer?

One reason is that the number of nations playing baseball is considerably smaller than for soccer. In baseball it's easier to be a big fish in a small pond.

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As much as I see the youth of Japan talk about and spend endless hours upon hours playing or practicing the sport, you would think they would be much better at the sport on the world stage. If Japan can do it in baseball, why not soccer?

They just don’t have the academies. There are local youth leagues, but not enough academies like in Europe where young talent can develop their game and skills.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yes you can become good but even Honda, Kagawa and Nagatomo were only so good until they joined top European soccer clubs and became extremely skilled over there learning from the pros.

True not only for Asian players as players from all continents learn from European pro football.

In the UK continental coaches and foreign players brought the Premier League to the level of today and beyond the 'kick and rush' game played by the Britons :)

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It would hard for the performance to be any worse. The Koreans cheating/getting to the semi-final a few years back was probably the highlight and will remain so for the forseeable future.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Nan Ferra: "It would hard for the performance to be any worse. The Koreans cheating/getting to the semi-final a few years back was probably the highlight and will remain so for the forseeable future."

Agreed Asia can't get a lot worse, but what we're going to see from the next WC is people buying in; namely China. It'll expand their presence, but not necessarily the talent. And how did SK cheat, by the way? If the ref made a bad call, that's the ref's fault, not the team cheating.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Japan can do it in baseball, why not soccer?

Baseball is only a proper professional sport in a handful of countries, notably USA, Canada, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Cuba, and Dominican Republic.

Football is the world game, played all over the world with just about every country on earth bar a few with professional leagues.

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We're still watching WC 2018, who cares about Qatar pipe dreams until this one is over guys.

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And how did SK cheat, by the way? If the ref made a bad call, that's the ref's fault, not the team cheating.

I won't bother going into details Smithy, you can google it. But one of the refs became a convicted drug trafficker amongst other things. Nothing has ever been firmly tied to anyone, but I remember watching the games at the time and being convinced that the refs in the Spain & Italy games were either beyond incompetent or had been gotten to. Their performances those nights were not just down to 'bad calls', they were astonishingly one-sided.

Spain & Italy getting knocked out was very funny though :)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Asia seeks better World Cup results in Qatar 2022."

From this title and the context of this © 2018 AFP column I have my all expectations AFC will make progress and productive results when Asian countries have more risks of competition with other continents. It would be better way when FIFA creates more play-off matches to compete, the stronger Europe and South America to add one more team to go to play-off with Asia, Africa, North/Central. As long as the rest of world risk to play stronger European and South American team who wins will be qualified. Asian countries to compete only by themselves will be eternally the same, where the prospective

0 ( +0 / -0 )

...purposes won't go forward. Nothing much more competitive to Europe/South America qualifiers.

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