Japan 4 – 0 Belgium 0 Kirin Cup Highlights

May 31, 2009 | Filed Under: World Box 
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japan-4-belgium-0 Japan overwhelmed Belgium 4-0 on Sunday to win the three-nation Kirin Cup football tournament for a third year running.

The Japanese, who defeated Chile 4-0 on Wednesday, ended with two wins for six points, while Chile and Belgium, who drew with each other on Friday, ended with one point each.

“It is good to win this tournament before going to Uzbekistan (for a World Cup qualifier next Saturday). I’m glad we made that,” said Japan coach Takeshi Okada.

“I just hope we can play solidly against Uzbekistan too. We are determined to beat (them).”

Forward Shinji Okazaki and midfielder Kengo Nakamura connected passes at the edge of the Belgian area for defender Yuto Nagatomo’s goal to open the scoring in the 21st minute for Japan.

Only two minutes later, Wolfsburg forward Yoshito Okubo sent a straight pass to Nakamura, who fired a right-footer home to put Japan two up.

Japan dominated the first half hitting a total of 11 shots on goal with Yasuhito Endo, Okubo and Wolfsburg midfielder Makoto Hasebe hitting the post or the bar.

Belgium, who have played 11 World Cups, managed to hit only one clear shot on goal in the first half through midfielder Kevin Roelandts, who scored his first goal in his debut against Chile on Friday. But his shot went wide.

The visitors played more aggressively in the second half, but it was again the home side who scored first when Okubo was free to send a cross from the right to forward Shinji Okazaki’s heading goal in the 60th minute.

After Venlo midfielder Keisuke Honda narrowly missed a shot on a free kick in the 74th minute, Japan made it 4-0 with substitute forward Kisho Yano striking home on a left cross from Nagatomo in the 77th minute.

– AFP/de

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