Soccer Topics

Sanfrecce target Club World Cup final

Dec 9, 2012

Sanfrecce target Club World Cup final

Sanfrecce Hiroshima hope to go where no J. League or Asian team has gone before — the Club World Cup final. Not even their big-budgeted predecessors Urawa Reds (2007), Gamba Osaka (2008) and Kashiwa Reysol (2011) were able to reach the final, but Hiroshima ...

Dec 4, 2012

Fearless Auckland looking to upset Sanfrecce

by Gus Fielding

Auckland City’s colorful cast of part-timers have no problem with their underdog status ahead of their Club World Cup clash against Sanfrecce Hiroshima, but striker Manel Exposito has warned the Japanese champions to be ready for a fight in the playoff opener on Thursday. ...

Nov 29, 2012

Iraq boss Zico quits over 'breach'

Former Japan manager Zico announced his resignation as Iraq manager Tuesday while the team is still taking part in the qualifying round for the 2014 World Cup, citing a “breach” by the country’s soccer federation. Zico, who coached Japan to the 2006 World Cup ...

Brazil not looking to hire ex-Barcelona coach Guardiola

Nov 28, 2012

Brazil not looking to hire ex-Barcelona coach Guardiola

Brazilian Football Confederation president Jose Maria Marin on Monday dismissed reports the five-time world champions are going to sign former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola to lead their 2014 World Cup campaign. “There is a very little chance it will be a foreign coach. We ...

Nov 27, 2012

Zaccheroni eyes Confederations test

Japan coach Alberto Zaccheroni said Monday he craves tough matchups for his team at the Confederations Cup next June, such as Brazil and France, against whom Samurai Blue struggled in last month’s friendlies. “It’s a crucial competition for us,” Zaccheroni said at Narita airport, ...

Nov 14, 2012

Japan provides strong challenge for Oman

by Gus Fielding

With a spot at Brazil 2014 coming ever closer into view, Asian champion Japan has arrived here wary but confident ahead of Wednesday’s World Cup qualifier against Oman. Japan breezed past Oman 3-0 at home in Saitama in June and could have won by ...

Komano doubtful for Oman qualifier

Nov 13, 2012

Komano doubtful for Oman qualifier

by Gus Fielding

Japan is sweating on the fitness of Yuichi Komano ahead of its World Cup qualifier away to Oman, after the versatile Jubilo Iwata defender skipped the Asian champions’ final training session in Doha on Monday with a sore back. Komano hurt his lower back ...

Nov 12, 2012

Kiyotake ready to deputize for injured Kagawa

Nuremberg midfielder Hiroshi Kiyotake has vowed to plug the gap left by injured Manchester United star Shinji Kagawa when Japan take on Oman in next week’s World Cup qualifier In Muscat. Kagawa has been ruled out of Wednesday’s Group B clash after sustaining a ...

Endo sits out training session in Doha

Nov 11, 2012

Endo sits out training session in Doha

by Gus Fielding

Gamba Osaka midfielder Yasuhito Endo sat out training Friday as injury-hit Japan held its first session after arriving in Doha for a mini camp ahead of next Wednesday’s World Cup qualifier away to Oman. Endo, who made a record 123rd appearance for Japan in ...

Nov 6, 2012

Japan rallies to claim futsal draw

Kaoru Morioka scored twice as Japan earned a dramatic 5-5 draw on Sunday in its FIFA Futsal World Cup Group C match against Portugal. Trailing 3-0 in the ninth minute, Japan got back into the game and went into the break trailing the Portuguese ...