Honda slams 'basketball' referee after win over Palestine

Jan 12, 2015

Honda slams 'basketball' referee after win over Palestine

Japan midfielder Keisuke Honda has slammed referee Abdulrahman Hussain and accused the Qatari of officiating Japan’s opening 4-0 win over 10-man Palestine at the Asian Cup on Monday “like a basketball game.” The AC Milan attacker claims the level of refereeing at the Asian ...

Japan cruises past Palestine in opener

Jan 12, 2015

Japan cruises past Palestine in opener

Four-time champion Japan made the perfect start to its Asian Cup defense with a 4-0 whipping of tournament debutant Palestine on Monday. Yasuhito Endo marked his fourth Asian Cup with the opener after eight minutes, and further goals from Shinji Okazaki and Keisuke Honda ...

Japan prepares to step into unknown with Palestine opener

Jan 5, 2015

Japan prepares to step into unknown with Palestine opener

Japan’s senior players have admitted to feeling a sense of trepidation as they prepare to enter uncharted territory and face war-torn Palestine in their opening match of the Asian Cup next week. Palestine has beaten seemingly insurmountable odds to earn the right to play ...

Japan beats Auckland in Asian Cup warm-up

Jan 4, 2015

Japan beats Auckland in Asian Cup warm-up

Japan coach Javier Aguirre said he was generally pleased with his side’s performance after the Samurai Blue beat New Zealand part-timers Auckland City 2-0 on Sunday in their final warm-up before launching their defense of the Asian Cup. Japan’s most-capped player, Yasuhito Endo, opened ...

Endo relishing fourth Asian Cup appearance

Dec 31, 2014

Endo relishing fourth Asian Cup appearance

He turns 35 in January, but Yasuhito Endo, Japan’s most-capped player, says he has no intention of taking his foot off the pedal as he enters his 13th year with the senior national team. Endo has enjoyed an outstanding 2014 season and was deservedly ...

Japan players put faith in Aguirre

Dec 29, 2014

Japan players put faith in Aguirre

The Spanish La Liga match-fixing allegations surrounding Japan coach Javier Aguirre may have left a black cloud hanging over the Samurai Blue ahead of their upcoming defense of the Asian Cup, but his players said Monday they have put their trust in him. The ...

Aguirre refuses to let allegations cloud Asian Cup preparation

Dec 15, 2014

Aguirre refuses to let allegations cloud Asian Cup preparation

Against a backdrop of uncertainty following allegations of his involvement in a match-fixing scandal in Spain, Japan coach Javier Aguirre on Monday named his 23-man squad for the upcoming Asian Cup. Spanish prosecutors are reportedly investigating Aguirre for possibly being involved in match-fixing three ...

Urawa draw sends Gamba top

Nov 29, 2014

Urawa draw sends Gamba top

Urawa Reds surrendered a last-gasp equalizer, and quite possibly the J. League title with it, after they were held to a 1-1 draw away to 10-man Sagan Tosu on Saturday. Yuki Abe’s second-half penalty looked to have clinched the three points and moved Reds ...

Treble-chasing Gamba reach Emperor's Cup final

Nov 26, 2014

Treble-chasing Gamba reach Emperor's Cup final

Brazilian forward Patric and strike partner Takashi Usami both scored twice as Gamba Osaka kept alive their hopes of a league and cup treble on Wednesday with a 5-2 win over relegation-haunted Shimizu S-Pulse in the semifinals of the Emperor’s Cup. Gamba squandered a ...

Honda says veterans vital for Japan

Nov 19, 2014

Honda says veterans vital for Japan

AC Milan midfielder Keisuke Honda believes Japan has reaped the benefit of recalling a number of seasoned veterans and says experience will be crucial to the Samurai Blue’s chances of retaining their Asian Cup title in Australia in January. New coach Javier Aguirre used ...