Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Japan ready to strut stuff against Costa Rica

Japan ready to strut stuff against Costa Rica

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Japan's win over Germany made headlines around the world, after they came from a goal down to upset the four-time world champions. AFP

Japan ready to strut stuff against Costa Rica

Japan sashayed through Germany's defence to win their opening World Cup game but captain Maya Yoshida said the Blue Samurai cannot afford to "dance badly" against Costa Rica on November 27 (5pm Cambodian time).

Japan stunned the Germans 2-1 and now have the chance to take a big step towards the knock-out stage when they face a wounded Costa Rica in Group E.

The Central Americans opened their campaign on the wrong end of a 7-0 hiding by Spain but Yoshida insists Japan will not take their opponents lightly.

"The spotlight is on us after the last game and we have to make sure that we don't dance badly," the defender said on November 26.

"Make no mistake, when you win it makes you feel more comfortable. We have to stay calm, prepare well and concentrate on the plan to get us the win.
"We're not through yet."

Yoshida said that the Japanese media have tended to focus on the team's games against European heavyweights Germany and Spain ever since the draw was made, with the Costa Rica clash being "pushed to one side".

The captain is wary of a Costa Rican backlash after their Spanish humiliation.

"They got hammered in their previous game so I think they're really going to go for it," he said.

"There are no easy teams at the World Cup. They will be fighting for the pride of their country and we have to be mentally prepared to deal with that."

Japan's win over Germany made headlines around the world, after they came from a goal down to upset the four-time world champions.

Only seven of Japan's squad play their club football outside Europe and coach Hajime Moriyasu said the result was "no surprise" to his players.

"Japan have players in the Premier League and Bundesliga and it's normal for them to play against players from all over the world," he said.

"Of course people are saying it was a historic win for us, but for the players they prepared well and the result followed."

Japan have reached the knock-out round three times previously but they have never won their opening two games of a World Cup.

Victory over Costa Rica combined with a win for Spain over Germany later in the day would see Japan and Spain clinch their places in the last 16.

A win for Germany would put the group on a knife-edge and potentially make goal difference a deciding factor, but Moriyasu is refusing to get too far ahead of himself.

"More than thinking about goal difference, we're thinking about ways that we can win tomorrow's game because it will be a tough one," he said.


  • Tensions high ahead of historic Kun Khmer match up

    The long-awaited November 5 matchup between Kun Khmer legend Prum Samnang and Myanmar-Canadian boxer Dave Leduc has become the most anticipated fight of the year. The Wurkz Sena Kun Khmer promotion, which will be held at the Town Arena at Chip Mong 271 Megamall, will see six

  • Manet: Cambodia safe for travel

    Prime Minister Hun Manet acknowledged that Cambodia and China have cooperated to tackle internet scamming, fraud and other cross border crimes, but insisted that the “Kingdom of Wonders” is completely peaceful and safe. He welcomed tourists to come and explore its rich heritage. During a

  • UNESCO formally list Battambang gastronomy

    Battambang, renowned for its cultural heritage, has achieved a significant milestone as the first Cambodian municipality to join the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN). The UCCN unites nearly 300 cities prioritising creativity and cultural industries in local development plans and international cooperation. On World Cities Day,

  • Cambodia pivots to solar, wind energy

    Cambodia is planning a move towards solar and wind energy to meet its rising power demands, according to Minister of Mines and Energy Keo Rottanak. On the sidelines of the Singapore International Energy Week event held recently, Rottanak emphasised the urgency of diversifying Cambodia’s

  • Angkor causeway symbol of Cambodia-Japan ties

    In a historic moment marking another milestone in the 70-year-long diplomatic relations between Cambodia and Japan, King Norodom Sihamoni celebrated the formal inauguration of a causeway located to the west of the world-renowned Angkor Wat. While presiding over the November 4 ceremony, the King emphasised the

  • Manet calls for Cambodia’s railways to get back on track

    Prime Minister Hun Manet has instructed the relevant authorities to expedite studies into upgrades to the Phnom Penh to Preah Sihanouk railway line. He suggested that the maximum speed on the line should be increased to 80km/h, in order to expedite the transportation of