England vs Japan Friendly 2010: A Tough Challenge for Takeshi Okada
Following a poor show by Japan in a 2-0 defeat to arch rivals South Korea in a friendly match on 24 May, Japanese coach Takeshi Okada is now under pressure. He was severely criticized by Japanese media, but Motoaki Inukai, the president of Japan Football Association, asked the coach to continue his job till the world cup 2010.
The upcoming friendly match against England is now seen as a big challenge for Japanese coach who could have been sacked following Japan’s defeat to South Korea unless there was world cup coming up next. Japan will face England on 30 May 2010 in Austria.
South Korea dominated over Japan throughout the match with captain Park Ji-Sung and Park Chu-Young scoring for the visitors. Japanese media reacted very strongly blaming the coach’s irresponsibility.
On Tuesday, England clinched a 3-1 victory over Mexico at the Wembley stadium in London, but the Three Lions were not as impressive as the score line may suggest. Mexico, in fact, outperformed England in terms of ball possession.
However, England striker Wayne Rooney has assured that they would come back strongly against Japan. Captain Rio Ferdinand also voiced the same. English players would like to give their best against Japan as this is apparently their last chance to claim a place in the final 23-man squad.
So, Japan can expect a more determined England with the players looking to impress coach Fabio Capello. As a result, Takeshi Okada and his team may face tougher challenge from England than what they experience against South Korea at home.