Japan will be matching up against other participating contingents in the Men’s Football event at the Tokyo Olympics. The event will commence on July 22nd.
A sum of 16 teams will lock horns against each other, with four teams distributed equally in four groups. Each team will play as many as three group stage matches, and the top two teams from each group will be heading forward for claiming their seat in the knockout stages.
The matches in the football event will kick off between 1:30 pm and 5 pm, and eight matches are scheduled to happen on the same day. Seven venues in six different cities will host the Men’s football event – Kashima, Rifu, Saitama, Sapporo, Tokyo, and Yokohama. The final of the event will be played at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo on August 7.
Japan Team Preview
Maya Yoshida will lead the Japan national football team. He led Japan to a 1-1 draw with Spain on Saturday in its final warm-up ahead of its opening game in the men’s football on Thursday, with a socially distanced crowd in attendance at Kobe City Stadium.
Japan have only won an Olympic men’s football medal once. They won a bronze in the Mexico 1968 event, but manager Hajime Moriyasu is confident of glory on home soil.
Former Southampton defender Maya Yoshida and Real Madrid youngster Takefusa Kubo were named in an 18-man Japan football squad “aiming for gold” at the Tokyo Olympics. They will be the key players throughout the competition.
Yoshida, 32, has won 107 senior caps and played in two World Cups so far. He will play his third Olympics as one of three overage players in the Under-24 squad.
Japan are grouped along with France, Mexico and South Africa in Group A. They start their campaign against South Africa in Tokyo on 22 July.
|vs South Africa||Tokyo Stadium, Chofu||22nd July|
|vs Mexico||Saitama Stadium, Saitama||25th July|
|vs France||International Stadium Yokohama||28th July|
Japan Olympic Squad
Goalkeepers: Keisuke Osako (Sanfrecce Hiroshima), Kosei Tani (Shonan Bellmare)
Defenders: Maya Yoshida (Sampdoria/ITA), Hiroki Sakai (Urawa Reds), Kou Itakura (Groningen/NED), Yuta Nakayama (PEC Zwolle/NED), Reo Hatate (Kawasaki Frontale), Takehiro Tomiyasu (Bologna/ITA), Daiki Hashioka (Sint-Truiden/BEL)
Midfielders: Wataru Endo (Stuttgart/GER), Yuki Soma (Nagoya Grampus), Koji Miyoshi (Antwerp/BEL), Kaoru Mitoma (Kawasaki Frontale), Ritsu Doan (PSV Eindhoven/NED), Ao Tanaka (Kawasaki Frontale), Takefusa Kubo (Real Madrid/ESP)
Forwards: Daizen Maeda (Yokohama F Marinos), Ayase Ueda (Kashima Antlers)