world cup

Stunned silence in Tokyo as Japan's World Cup dream ends

23 Comments
By Toshifumi Kitamura

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23 Comments
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Did they still clean up their trash after this photo op?

4 ( +9 / -5 )

not trying to bash Japan as that loss would be gutting, but that last 25minutes just shows you the differece between one of the worlds top teams compared to an Asian ranked team, too come from 0-2 behind to score 3 goal in the last 25minutes, that was a slaughter

11 ( +15 / -4 )

Just goes to show Japans cockiness and arrogance meant nothing in the end. They were destroyed by a much more skilled and superior team.

-3 ( +8 / -11 )

Belgium = True Grit.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Stunned silence in Tokyo perhaps, but in my residential 'hood, a huge roar echoed over the rooftops at a bit after 4am, a car or house alarm went off, and several police sirens were heard from about half four.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Welcome to my world, Japan. Welcome to my world.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

A golazo by Inui blinded many to the bitter reality that one goal (or two) does not a victory make. Another lesson for the ever over-optimistic Japanese in not counting their chickens... Can't help thinking of the historical precedent when the initial, triumphant joy of the Japanese at their string of victories all suddenly turned to ashes in the end. Not to worry, though, the Japanese eleven are sure to come back from this defeat stronger than ever to rock Qatar in 2022.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

Ok they certainly gave it their all, but why not acknowledge the other team? Where's the sportsmanship? How are they going to watch the Olympics in 2020 and appreciate the athletes?

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Too bad for Otomo. His team lost plus he’s going to be drowsy at work all day.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They'd been kidding themselves...Japan was never going to the final four. They squeaked by Poland w/a dubious win.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

People seem to be considerably harsh today. I don't think anybody was counting their chickens, and there certainly weren't writing the Belgium team off. They were being gleefully optimistic that maybe their team could pull off the incredible and defeat a much higher ranked and skilled team. The team nor their fans having anything to be ashamed of. I do wonder if the coach was goaded a bit into playing full bore for the entire 90 minutes after being harshly criticized for his actions in the game versus Poland. My only complaint about the Japanese team was their inability to make fast clean crisp passes. There were so many occasions when their passes were either almost intercepted, or the were intercepted that led to a scoring chance by the Belgium team.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Asia will never beat the Europeans at football. I do not watch it much. But this is what common sense tells me with what little knowledge I have of the game and it's long history. It's like a European American foot ball team trying to come over and beat the Patriots. Or something like that, I think. Europeans excel in Football and Golf and many other sports. Sorry Japan. Stick with Kendo and Judo. Table tennis! Now that it is fun to watch! The Japanese are very good at Table tennis. In America we call it ping pong. God for bid ever calling football (soccer) in front of Europeans or Aussie's. You will be promptly corrected. Better luck next time Japan! Did everybody go back to work after the game this morning?

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

i don't feel sad at all, they played so well am actually respect and proud of them.

i put them in my heart as top team. looking forward to the next world cup.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Japanese fans were like 'heh!' Maaji des..hontoni maaji des!..after 2 - 0...and in the last seconds of the game after 3 - 2...they were like 'hehhhhhhhhhh!'...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Some very harsh comments. Imo neither the J team nor J public were arrogant or overly confident before the game.

If anything I would say they perhaps lacked ambition and self-belief. I sort of felt during the game that they played for the fans rather than to win. I reckon they'll be kicking themselves in a few days time when they realise they may have missed the opportunity of a lifetime to reach a wc qf (or more).

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Table tennis! Now that it is fun to watch! The Japanese are very good at Table tennis. In America we call it ping pong. 

Where are you going with this? Perhaps you should be a bit less patronising.

God for bid ever calling football (soccer) in front of Europeans or Aussie's. You will be promptly corrected.

Still rambling, but you could remind the Brits that soccer was the original British nickname for Association Football and only fell out of common parlance in Britain in the 80s. The idea that soccer is an American term is pure fiction. Tell your Brit friend that and after a moment's checking they will become very quiet.

Anyway, Japan did great. Football is not even its first sport, but nearly beat one of the best teams in the world. It will get its quarter final spot in due course.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Japan team did extremely well - only people who haven't seen the game can comment like some of the above...

But I have to second MarkX - just when they were in possession they wouldn't go that one more centimeter to keep or to take the ball especially in the center.

No mater - great game to watch, they saved us from extension torture and PKs and are leaving proud but a little disappointed. Their best World cup I would say!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

If they get rid of Kawashima, they could probably go further in future tournaments.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

“Just a short while earlier, whoops of joy had filled the pub in Tokyo's Shinagawa district as the Samurai Blue scored a second goal, defying expectations to go 2-0 up over star-studded Belgium.”

and that change from whooping to dead silence silence and all the crying show the bandwagon fandom I speak of. Some of the comments are balanced—praising Japan despite the loss—but the bitterness and entitlement of some are nearly as shameful of Japan’s new legacy as one of WC’s most shameful moments in its history (with the ending against Poland).

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I can't help but wonder how happy all the bitter and hateful commenters in this thread are with their lives. They must have been gravely disappointed when Japan didn't fail completely in the group stage as they undoubtebly all hoped they would.

@smithinjapan

How is being sad about a loss bandwagoning? It's being sad about a loss for chrissakes. They had real hope that Japan, which have been one of the most entertaining teams this WC, would pull of a real upset, but in the end it didn't work out. And no, only people like you who hates the national team will consider the Poland game to be Japans legacy from this world cup. The rest of the world, insofar they do remember RO16 exits (and occasionally, they do), will remember them for what has been the best game of the tournament so far, and one of the most fair played (no diving, no harsh fouling, no complaining to the ref from any of the teams)

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

When the dust and blind hysteria settles the realization willcome that japan completely collapsed inthe last 25 mins and was led tothe slaughter. Not a great performance.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If they get rid of Kawashima, they could probably go further in future tournaments.

It's not only about Kawashima but maybe more about the trainer who brought Honda too late and didn't replace players who gave it all. They didn't lose because of that lucky Belgian goal where Kawashima was fishing but because of the sloppy corner in the last minute which resulted in being ran over by Belgian players and the final goal.

With extra time the outcome could have been different :)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Japanese fans were like 'heh!' Maaji des..hontoni maaji des!..after 2 - 0...and in the last seconds of the game after 3 - 2...they were like 'hehhhhhhhhhh!'...

So what's your point, if any? :)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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