Japan women's national football team

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Japan
Japan women's national football team.svg
Nickname(s) なでしこジャパン (Nadeshiko Japan)
Association Japan Football Association
Confederation AFC (Asia)
Sub-confederation EAFF (East Asia)
Head coach Asako Takakura
Captain Saki Kumagai
Most caps Homare Sawa (205)
Top scorer Homare Sawa (83)
FIFA code JPN
Kit left arm jpn20h.png
Kit left arm.svg
Kit body jpn20h.png
Kit body.svg
Kit right arm jpn20h.png
Kit right arm.svg
Kit shorts jpn20h.png
Kit shorts.svg
Kit socks jpn20h.png
Kit socks long.svg
First colours
Kit left arm jpn18a.png
Kit left arm.svg
Kit body jpn18a.png
Kit body.svg
Kit right arm jpn18a.png
Kit right arm.svg
Kit shorts jpn18a.png
Kit shorts.svg
Kit socks jpn18a.png
Kit socks long.svg
Second colours
FIFA ranking
Current 11 Decrease2.svg 1 (27 March 2020) [1]
Highest3 (December 2011)
Lowest14 (July 2003)
First international
Flag of Chinese Taipei (FIFA).svg  Chinese Taipei 1–0 Japan  Flag of Japan (1870-1999).svg
(Hong Kong; 7 June 1981)
Biggest win
Flag of Japan (1870-1999).svg  Japan 21–0 Guam  Flag of Guam.svg
(Guangzhou, China; 5 December 1997)
Biggest defeat
Flag of Italy.svg  Italy 9–0 Japan  Flag of Japan (1870-1999).svg
(Tokyo, Japan; 9 September 1981) [2]
Flag of the United States.svg  United States 9–0 Japan  Flag of Japan (1870-1999).svg
(Charlotte, United States; 29 April 1999) [2]
World Cup
Appearances8 (first in 1991 )
Best resultChampions (2011)
Olympic Games
Appearances4 (first in 1996 )
Best resultRunners-up (2012)
Asian Cup
Appearances16 (first in 1977 )
Best resultChampions (2014, 2018)

The Japan women's national football team, or Nadeshiko Japan (なでしこジャパン), represents Japan in women's association football and is run by the Japan Football Association (JFA). It is the most successful women's national team from the Asian Football Confederation. Its highest ranking in the FIFA Women's World Rankings is 3rd, achieved in December 2011. [3]

Contents

Nadeshiko Japan defeated the United States in the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup Final, thus claiming their first FIFA Women's World Cup title, becoming the first Asian team to do so and only the fourth women's world champions. [4] It won silver medals at the 2012 Summer Olympics and the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup, making it the only Asian team to have three combined medals from international championships. [5] It also won gold medals at the 2014 and 2018 AFC Women's Asian Cups, the 2010 and 2018 Asian Games, and the 2008, 2010, and 2019 EAFF Football Championships.

History

1970s and 1980s

During the 1970s, the number of women football players and teams increased in Japan, and teams made up regional leagues in various parts of Japan. In 1977, the Japan team participated its first international tournament, 1977 AFC Women's Championship. But, this Japan team was not a national team, Japan Football Association dispatched club team, FC Jinnan as a Japan team. In 1980, "All-Japan Women's Football Championship" was held. In 1981, Japan Football Association formed first national team for 1981 AFC Women's Championship [6] and Seiki Ichihara managed as first Japan national team manager. [2] The first match against Chinese Taipei on 7 June at this tournament is the first match for Japan national team history. [2] In 1984, national team was formed for the first time in three years for a China expedition, and Takao Orii managed national team. [2]

In January 1986, Ryohei Suzuki became first full-time manager for national team. In December, Japan won the 2nd place at 1986 AFC Women's Championship. In 1989, the "Japan Women's Football League" (abbreviated to "L. League") was established, and the women's national team qualified for the "1991 FIFA Women's World Cup" in China.

Verge of decline

Japan women's national football team attended various championship tournaments such as the 1996 Summer Olympics and the 1995 FIFA Women's World Cup which had made the national team and the L.League very popular. However, in 1999, Japan failed to qualify for the 2000 Summer Olympics, and this helped to cause with economic stagnation (Lost Decade) the withdrawal of a series of teams from the L. League. Japanese women's football was on the verge of decline.

Regeneration

In August 2002, the Japan Football Association appointed Eiji Ueda, who had been coach for the Macau national football team, as the new head coach. Officials expected a revitalization of women's football and planned a team reorganization, aiming for the 2004 Summer Olympics. The team at first went through a losing streak, but Ueda gradually improved the team, and it eventually gained wide support in Japan. In particular, a game against Korea DPR, which decided who would participate in the 2004 Olympics, not only made fans rush to the National Stadium but also was widely watched on TV.

Following the increase in public interest in women's football in Japan, the JFA organized a public contest to select a nickname for the team. "Nadeshiko Japan" was chosen from among about 2,700 entries and was announced on 7 July 2004. "Nadeshiko", a kind of dianthus, comes from the phrase "Yamato Nadeshiko" (大和撫子, "ideal Japanese woman").

2003 and 2007 World Cup

Japan was dropped with Germany, Canada and Argentina during 2003 FIFA Women's World Cup. Beginning by a 6–0 thrash to newcomer Argentina, but later Japan fell on 0–3 loss to later champion Germany, and 1–3 to Canada, who later won 4th place.

Again, in 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup held in China, they again faced Germany, Argentina and England. They started with a 2–2 draw over England, before beating Argentina 1–0 after 90'. But a 0–2 loss over reigning champion Germany again eliminated Japan from the group stage. Japan's disappointing campaign through two decisive Women's World Cup would not have expected to lead to a 2011 triumph.

Golden Period

2011 World Cup

The Japan team thanking fans for their support for the humanitarian response to the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami after their World Cup win Selecao japonesa agradece o apoio da torcida (DSC01105).jpg
The Japan team thanking fans for their support for the humanitarian response to the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami after their World Cup win

Japan qualified for the finals by finishing third in the 2010 AFC Women's Asian Cup. After finishing second in their group behind England, Japan beat two-time defending champion and host nation Germany 1–0 in the quarterfinals, before easily defeating Sweden 3–1 to reach the final.

After the final game finished 2–2 after extra time, Japan beat the United States 3–1 in a penalty shootout, becoming the first Asian team to win the FIFA Women's World Cup, and the first Asian team to win a senior FIFA title. [9] [10] It came right after men's team won the 2011 AFC Asian Cup, marked their most successful year in Japanese football.

2012 Summer Olympics

Japan qualified for the 2012 Summer Olympics by finishing first in the Asian qualifier in September 2011, only 6 weeks after winning the Women's World Cup. At the Olympics, after finishing second in their group behind Sweden, Nadeshiko Japan defeated Brazil 2–0 in the quarterfinals, followed by a 2–1 victory over France, whom Nadeshiko had lost to in a friendly match right before the Olympics, to reach the final.

In a rematch of the World Cup final, Japan was defeated in the Olympic final by a score of 1–2 against the United States, allowing two goals to Carli Lloyd in the 8th and 54th minutes. Yūki Ōgimi scored the lone goal for Japan. [11]

Nadeshiko, 2013 Nadeshiko.jpg
Nadeshiko, 2013

2014 Asian Cup

Despite having won a FIFA Women's World Cup in 2011, Japan entered the 2014 Asian Cup having never previously won the tournament. They were drawn with Asia's Queen Australia, host Vietnam and newcomer Jordan.[ citation needed ] Their first match in the group stage of the tournament resulted in a 2–2 draw against the defending champion Australia. [12] Also in the group stage, Japan upset host Vietnam by a 4–0 win before defeating Jordan with a 7–0 win to finish first with a higher goal difference.[ citation needed ]

In the semi-final, Japan beat eight-time champions China 2–1 after 120'. In the final, they met Australia once again and successfully earned a 1–0 win with Azusa Iwashimizu's goal. This marked the first time for Japan to become "Queen of Asia". They became the first Asian team to subsequently win both the FIFA Women's World Cup and AFC Women's Asian Cup.[ citation needed ] Because of their top placement in the tournament, Japan, Australia, China, South Korea and newcomer Thailand secured their spot at the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup to be played in Canada the following year. [13]

2015 World Cup

The national teams of Japan and the United States at the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup Here they come (19619476868).jpg
The national teams of Japan and the United States at the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup

Japan, then fourth in the world, was drawn into Group C for the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup, with tournament debutants Ecuador, Switzerland, and Cameroon. Japan won all three games, securing passage into the Round of 16, where they drew yet another tournament debutant in the Netherlands. Saori Ariyoshi and Mizuho Sakaguchi scored goals for Japan, and they ultimately survived a couple of nervy moments to get into the quarterfinals. Against Australia, Japan once again used their technical possession game to frustrate The Matildas and negate their speed. Mana Iwabuchi notched the only goal of the game three minutes from time to send Japan to the semifinals.

Against England in the semifinals, Nadeshiko Japan was able to survive against the tenacious Lionesses, as the two teams traded goals from the penalty spot (Aya Miyama for Japan, Fara Williams for England). Deadlocked from the 40th minute on, Japan got a truly fortunate break as English centre back Laura Bassett, in trying to clear out a Japan cross, ended up scoring an own-goal at the death. This set up a rematch with the United States from the 2011 Women's World Cup.

Unfortunately for Japan, the Americans came out flying and scored four goals in the first 16 minutes of the match, with American midfielder Carli Lloyd scoring a hat trick in the process. Yuki Ogimi brought Japan one back in the 27th minute, and an own goal from Julie Johnston halved the American lead, but Tobin Heath put the final touch on the United States' third Women's World Cup victory.

Coaching staff

As of 25 February 2020
PositionNameStart dateRef.
Head coach Flag of Japan.svg Asako Takakura
Assistant coachFlag of Japan.svg Yumi Obe
Goalkeeper coachFlag of Japan.svg Akiyoshi Ohashi
Physical coachFlag of Japan.svg Norikazu Hirose

Players

Current squad

The following 23 players were named to the squad for the 2020 SheBelieves Cup. [14]

Caps and goals as of 12 March 2020 after match against Flag of the United States.svg  United States.

No.Pos.PlayerDate of birth (age)CapsGoalsClub
11 GK Sakiko Ikeda (池田 咲紀子) (1992-09-08) 8 September 1992 (age 27)160 Flag of Japan.svg Urawa Red Diamonds
181 GK Ayaka Yamashita (山下 杏也加) (1995-09-29) 29 September 1995 (age 24)370 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza
211 GK Chika Hirao (平尾 知佳) (1996-12-31) 31 December 1996 (age 23)20 Flag of Japan.svg Albirex Niigata

42 DF Saki Kumagai (熊谷 紗希) (captain) (1990-10-17) 17 October 1990 (age 29)1121 Flag of France.svg Lyon
202 DF Arisa Matsubara (松原 有沙) (1995-05-01) 1 May 1995 (age 24)41 Flag of Japan.svg Nojima Stella
32 DF Shiori Miyake (三宅 史織) (1995-10-13) 13 October 1995 (age 24)240 Flag of Japan.svg INAC Kobe Leonessa
222 DF Mayo Doko (土光 真代) (1996-05-03) 3 May 1996 (age 23)40 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza
22 DF Risa Shimizu (清水 梨紗) (1996-06-15) 15 June 1996 (age 23)330 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza
162 DF Asato Miyagawa (宮川 麻都) (1998-02-24) 24 February 1998 (age 22)110 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza
52 DF Moeka Minami (南 萌華) (1998-12-07) 7 December 1998 (age 21)120 Flag of Japan.svg Urawa Red Diamonds

73 MF Emi Nakajima (中島 依美) (1990-09-27) 27 September 1990 (age 29)8114 Flag of Japan.svg INAC Kobe Leonessa
123 MF Hikaru Naomoto (猶本 光) (1994-03-03) 3 March 1994 (age 26)200 Flag of Japan.svg Urawa Red Diamonds
103 MF Yuka Momiki (籾木 結花) (1996-04-09) 9 April 1996 (age 23)3310 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza
143 MF Yui Hasegawa (長谷川 唯) (1997-01-29) 29 January 1997 (age 23)428 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza
63 MF Hina Sugita (杉田 妃和) (1997-01-31) 31 January 1997 (age 23)180 Flag of Japan.svg INAC Kobe Leonessa
173 MF Narumi Miura (三浦 成美) (1997-07-03) 3 July 1997 (age 22)200 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza
193 MF Jun Endo (遠藤 純) (2000-05-24) 24 May 2000 (age 19)140 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza

94 FW Yuika Sugasawa (菅澤 優衣香) (1990-10-05) 5 October 1990 (age 29)7120 Flag of Japan.svg Urawa Red Diamonds
84 FW Mana Iwabuchi (岩渕 真奈) (1993-03-18) 18 March 1993 (age 27)7229 Flag of Japan.svg INAC Kobe Leonessa
154 FW Mina Tanaka (田中 美南) (1994-04-28) 28 April 1994 (age 25)4116 Flag of Japan.svg INAC Kobe Leonessa
234 FW Mami Ueno (上野 真実) (1996-09-27) 27 September 1996 (age 23)80 Flag of Japan.svg Ehime FC
134 FW Mayu Ikejiri (池尻 茉由) (1996-12-19) 19 December 1996 (age 23)72 Flag of Japan.svg Vegalta Sendai
114 FW Riko Ueki (植木 理子) (1999-07-30) 30 July 1999 (age 20)50 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza

Recent call-ups

The following players have been called up to the Japan squad in the past 12 months.

Pos.PlayerDate of birth (age)CapsGoalsClubLatest call-up
GK Natsumi Asano (浅野 菜摘) (1997-04-14) 14 April 1997 (age 22)00 Flag of Japan.svg Elfen Saitama v. Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa, 10 November 2019
GK Rei Takenaka (武仲 麗依) (1992-05-18) 18 May 1992 (age 27)00 Flag of Japan.svg INAC Kobe Leonessa v. Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada, 6 October 2019

DF Kiko Seike (清家 貴子) (1996-08-08) 8 August 1996 (age 23)21 Flag of Japan.svg Urawa Red Diamonds Training camp, 14–19 February 2020
DF Hana Takahashi (高橋 はな) (2000-02-19) 19 February 2000 (age 20)10 Flag of Japan.svg Urawa Red Diamonds v. Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada, 6 October 2019
DF Aya Sameshima (鮫島 彩) (1987-06-16) 16 June 1987 (age 32)1135 Flag of Japan.svg INAC Kobe Leonessa v. Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada, 6 October 2019 INJ
DF Rumi Utsugi (宇津木 瑠美) (1988-12-05) 5 December 1988 (age 31)1136Unattached 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup
DF Nana Ichise (市瀬 菜々) (1997-08-04) 4 August 1997 (age 22)190 Flag of Japan.svg Vegalta Sendai 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup
DF Risako Oga (大賀 理紗子) (1997-01-04) 4 January 1997 (age 23)30 Flag of Japan.svg Nojima Stella v. Flag of Germany.svg  Germany, 9 April 2019

MF Honoka Hayashi (林 穂之香) (1998-05-19) 19 May 1998 (age 21)10 Flag of Japan.svg Cerezo Osaka Training camp, 14–19 February 2020 INJ
MF Akari Kurishima (栗島 朱里) (1994-09-14) 14 September 1994 (age 25)10 Flag of Japan.svg Urawa Red Diamonds 2019 EAFF Championship
MF Hinata Miyazawa (宮澤 ひなた) (1999-11-21) 21 November 1999 (age 20)20 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza v. Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa, 10 November 2019 INJ
MF Mizuho Sakaguchi (阪口 夢穂) (1987-10-15) 15 October 1987 (age 32)12429 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup

FW Rikako Kobayashi (小林 里歌子) (1997-07-21) 21 July 1997 (age 22)124 Flag of Japan.svg Nippon TV Beleza 2020 SheBelieves Cup INJ
FW Rika Masuya (増矢 理花) (1995-09-14) 14 September 1995 (age 24)276 Flag of Japan.svg INAC Kobe Leonessa v. Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa, 10 November 2019
FW Saori Takarada (宝田 沙織) (1999-12-27) 27 December 1999 (age 20)30 Flag of Japan.svg Cerezo Osaka v. Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada, 6 October 2019
FW Kumi Yokoyama (横山 久美) (1993-08-13) 13 August 1993 (age 26)4317 Flag of the United States.svg Washington Spirit 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup

Notes:

Player records

*Active players in bold, statistics correct as of 12 March 2020.

Managerial history

Schedule and results

The following is a list of match results in the last 12 months, as well as any future matches that have been scheduled.

Dates and times are shown in Japanese local time unless otherwise noted.

  Win  Draw  Lose

2019

2020

19–27 October 2020 Friendly TBDvFlag of Japan.svg  Japan
23 November–1 December 2020 Friendly TBDvFlag of Japan.svg  Japan

2021

Honours

International

Med 1.png Champions: 2011
Med 2.png Runners-up: 2015
Med 2.png Runners-up: 2012

Continental

Med 1.png Champions: 2014, 2018
Med 2.png Runners-up: 1986, 1991, 1995, 2001
Med 1.png Champions: 2010, 2018
Med 2.png Runners-up: 1990, 1994, 2006, 2014

Regional

Med 1.png Champions: 2008, 2010
Med 2.png Runners-up: 2013, 2017

Minor tournaments

Runners-up: 2012, 2014

Competitive record

FIFA Women's World Cup

FIFA Women's World Cup record
Hosts / YearResultGPWD*LGSGAGD
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg 1991 Group stage3003012−12
Flag of Sweden.svg 1995 Quarter-finals410328−6
Flag of the United States.svg 1999 Group stage3012110−9
Flag of the United States.svg 2003 310276+1
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg 2007 311134−1
Flag of Germany.svg 2011 Champions6411126+6
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg 2015 Runners-up7601118+3
Flag of France.svg 2019 Round of 16411235−2
Flag of Japan.svg 2023 TBD
Total8/833144153959−20
*Draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.
FIFA Women's World Cup history
YearRoundDateOpponentResultStadium
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg 1991 Group stage17 NovemberFlag of Brazil (1968-1992).svg  Brazil L 0–1 New Plaza Stadium, Foshan
19 NovemberFlag of Sweden.svg  Sweden L 0–8
21 NovemberFlag of the United States.svg  United States L 0–3
Flag of Sweden.svg 1995 Group stage5 JuneFlag of Germany.svg  Germany L 0–1 Tingvallen, Karlstad
7 JuneFlag of Brazil.svg  Brazil W 2–1
9 JuneFlag of Sweden.svg  Sweden L 0–2 Arosvallen, Västerås
Quarter-finals13 JuneFlag of the United States.svg  United States L 0–4 Strömvallen, Gävle
Flag of the United States.svg 1999 Group stage19 JuneFlag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada D 1–1 Spartan Stadium, San Jose
23 JuneFlag of Russia.svg  Russia L 0–5 Civic Stadium, Portland
26 JuneFlag of Norway.svg  Norway L 0–4 Soldier Field, Chicago
Flag of the United States.svg 2003 Group stage20 SeptemberFlag of Argentina.svg  Argentina W 6–0 Columbus Crew Stadium, Columbus
24 SeptemberFlag of Germany.svg  Germany L 0–3
27 SeptemberFlag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada L 1–3 Gillette Stadium, Foxborough
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg 2007 Group stage11 SeptemberFlag of England.svg  England D 2–2 Hongkou Stadium, Shanghai
14 SeptemberFlag of Argentina.svg  Argentina W 1–0
17 SeptemberFlag of Germany.svg  Germany L 0–2 Yellow Dragon Sports Center, Hangzhou
Flag of Germany.svg 2011 Group stage27 JuneFlag of New Zealand.svg  New Zealand W 2–1 Ruhrstadion, Bochum
1 JulyFlag of Mexico.svg  Mexico W 4–0 BayArena, Leverkusen
5 JulyFlag of England.svg  England L 0–2 Impuls Arena, Augsburg
Quarter-finals9 JulyFlag of Germany.svg  Germany W 1–0 Volkswagen-Arena, Wolfsburg
Semi-finals13 JulyFlag of Sweden.svg  Sweden W 3–1 Commerzbank-Arena, Frankfurt
Final 17 JulyFlag of the United States.svg  United States D 2–2 (3–1 pen)
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg 2015 Group stage8 JuneFlag of Switzerland.svg   Switzerland W 1–0 BC Place, Vancouver
12 JuneFlag of Cameroon.svg  Cameroon W 2–1
16 JuneFlag of Ecuador.svg  Ecuador W 1–0 Winnipeg Stadium, Winnipeg
Round of 1623 JuneFlag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands W 2–1 BC Place, Vancouver
Quarter-finals27 JuneFlag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia W 1–0 Commonwealth Stadium, Edmonton
Semi-finals1 JulyFlag of England.svg  England W 2–1
Final 5 JulyFlag of the United States.svg  United States L 2–5 BC Place, Vancouver
Flag of France.svg 2019 Group stage10 JuneFlag of Argentina.svg  Argentina D 0–0 Parc des Princes, Paris
14 JuneFlag of Scotland.svg  Scotland W 2–1 Roazhon Park, Rennes
19 JuneFlag of England.svg  England L 0–2 Allianz Riviera, Nice
Round of 1625 JuneFlag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands L 1–2 Roazhon Park, Rennes

Olympic Games