Clearly feeling the heat as the sun looks ready to set on Japan's World Cup, coach Alberto Zaccheroni has defended his decision to deploy power-play tactics, but conceded his players have struggled to adapt because it is "not in their DNA."

The Asian champions' trademark game, which relies on pace and short, quick passing movements, has proved largely ineffective so far in their first two matches at the World Cup.

As a result, the Samurai Blue's hopes of making the knockout phase are hanging by a thread ahead of Tuesday's final Group C game against already qualified Colombia.