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Discussion Starter #61
Team Belgium, which will undoubtedly slaughter the Samurais if Zaccheroni doesn't make some changes fast.

▼GK
Simon Mignolet (Liverpool)
Thibaut Courtois (Atletico: La Liga)
Koen Casteels (Hoffenheim: Bundesliga)

▼DF
Thomas Vermaelen (Arsenal)
Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham)
Daniel Van Buyten (Bayern: Bundesliga)
Toby Alderweireld (Atletico: La Liga)
Sébastien Pocognoli (Hoffenheim: Bundesliga)
Laurent Ciman (Standard Liege: Belgium)
Thomas Meunier (Club Brugge: Belgium)
Nicolas Lombaerts (Zenit: Russia)

▼MF
Marouane Fellaini (Man United)
Nacer Chadli (Tottenham)
Moussa Dembele (Tottenham)
Radja Nainggolan (Cagliari: Serie A)
Steven Defour (FC Porto: Portugal)
Timmy Simons (Club Brugge: Belgium)
Axel Witsel (Zenit: Russia)

▼FW
Romelu Lukaku (Everton)
Christian Benteke (Aston Villa)
Kevin De Bruyne (Chelsea)
Eden Hazard (Chelsea)
Kevin Mirallas (Everton)
Zakaria Bakkali (PSV: Eredivisie)
Dries Mertens (Napoli: Serie A)
Jelle Vossen (Genk: Belgium)

What a team :help:
 

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Discussion Starter #62
Team Netherlands which will play Japan this break

GK
Jasper Cillessen (Ajax)
Maarten Stekelenburg (Fulham)
Tim Krul (Newcastle)

DFDaley Blind (Ajax)
Ron Vlaar (Aston Villa)
Bruno Martins Indi (Feyenoord)
Stefan de Vrij (Feyenoord)
Daryl Janmaat (Feyenoord)
Gregory van der Wiel (PSG)
Jetro Willems (PSV Eindhoven)
Joël Veltman (Ajax)

MF
Rafael van der Vaart (Hamburger SV)
Stijn Schaars (PSV Eindhoven)
Jordy Clasie (Feyenoord)
Nigel de Jong (Milan)
Kevin Strootman (Roma)
Jonathan de Guzmán (Swansea)

FW
Robin van Persie (Man United)
Jeremain Lens (Dynamo Kyiv)
Arjen Robben (Bayern Munich)
Memphis Depay (PSV Eindhoven)
Dirk Kuyt (Fenerbahce)
Luciano Narsingh (PSV Eindhoven)
 

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Discussion Starter #66
FT NED 2-2 Japan.

Japan came back from two down, to take the draw. Surprisingly, Japan were the better team on the pitch for much of the match, controlling the ball for long stretches, and winning it back quickly.

The team functioned well, minus a few defensive errors from Uchida. Okazaki on the right flank was the weak link on the attack, repeatedly wasting good balls. Honda was far from his best, but worked hard. Good match to watch.
 

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FT NED 2-2 Japan.

Japan came back from two down, to take the draw. Surprisingly, Japan were the better team on the pitch for much of the match, controlling the ball for long stretches, and winning it back quickly.

The team functioned well, minus a few defensive errors from Uchida. Okazaki on the right flank was the weak link on the attack, repeatedly wasting good balls. Honda was far from his best, but worked hard. Good match to watch.
No mention of Kagawa? How.. how.. did he do?
 

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World class when he came on...
Oh, the way you put it....

Edit:

kagawa-inspires-turnaround-against-holland-with-brilliant-backheel-assist

Shinji Kagawa’s performance against Holland has been lauded as one of his best in recent times as he helped inspire a turnaround as Japan came from two goals down to draw 2-2.

The 24-year-old didn’t start the match due to feeling a slight discomfort in his right ankle but made a real impact when he came on at half time.

His incisive passing proved and smart movement helped Japan to take the game to Holland and put the 2010 World Cup runners up under real pressure that eventually paid off when Honda equalised in the 60th minute, finishing off a wonderful team.

 

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Discussion Starter #72
No mention of Kagawa? How.. how.. did he do?
JNT Kagawa was JNT Kagawa :ROFL: Lots of tight passes, f*ck the left wing, here there and everywhere, combinations, at one point he dribbled past the defenders himself and took a shot which the keeper had to dive to save. Team definitely looked better when he came on, but we really should have left Kiyotake on the left, or pushed Nagatomo up and placed Sakai behind him to contain Robben. Should put Kagawa in the middle, Honda in midfield or today we could have put Honda on the right as Okazaki was so poor.

Zaccheroni was saying in the post match interview that he wanted to give some of the second players some minutes on the pitch, so I guess it was a rotation thing. I.e. Kagawa's a lock for Japan, so doesn't need to start every friendly. We benched Kagawa, Kawashima, Endo, Kakitani, and gave Osako, Kiyotake, Yamaguchi, and Nishikawa a start. Zacc might be pegging Belgium as the bigger match, with van Persie, Sneijder, Clasie, Kuyt and others missing from the Dutch squad. Van der Vaart was the main problem for us, and Hasebe wasn't marking him well. We looked much better when Endo came on and marked him out, while Kagawa came off the left and added a number in the middle. With the Dutch playing so wide relying on Robben, there was space to pass, and once we marked out their anchor we were winning the ball fast.
 

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JNT Kagawa was JNT Kagawa :ROFL: Lots of tight passes, f*ck the left wing, here there and everywhere, combinations, at one point he dribbled past the defenders himself and took a shot which the keeper had to dive to save. Team definitely looked better when he came on, but we really should have left Kiyotake on the left, or pushed Nagatomo up and placed Sakai behind him to contain Robben. Should put Kagawa in the middle, Honda in midfield or today we could have put Honda on the right as Okazaki was so poor.

Zaccheroni was saying in the post match interview that he wanted to give some of the second players some minutes on the pitch, so I guess it was a rotation thing. I.e. Kagawa's a lock for Japan, so doesn't need to start every friendly. We benched Kagawa, Kawashima, Endo, Kakitani, and gave Osako, Kiyotake, Yamaguchi, and Nishikawa a start. Zacc might be pegging Belgium as the bigger match, with van Persie, Sneijder, Clasie, Kuyt and others missing from the Dutch squad. Van der Vaart was the main problem for us, and Hasebe wasn't marking him well. We looked much better when Endo came on and marked him out, while Kagawa came off the left and added a number in the middle. With the Dutch playing so wide relying on Robben, there was space to pass, and once we marked out their anchor we were winning the ball fast.
3 Hollywood flicks for one goal in one smooth move against Holland. Cool.
 

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Discussion Starter #75
Evil Kagawa ‏@evilkagawa 13m
Kagawa vs Holland:
79 pass 79 complete (100%)
11 goal chance create
1 assist



Are those stats right? :eek:
:ROFL: Obviously not. Wouldn't be Kagawa without a few no look heel flicks that teammates don't respond to. Think it was Osako that got the assist. He did create some great chances though. Put through a great vertical throughball to Kakitani that should have been a goal, but Kakitani managed to fluff it wide.
 

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Discussion Starter #79
Shaky out the gate, but we held well and regained composure. After Belgium scored the first goal, they pulled back and repeatedly attempted to nick our verticals and attack on the break, which made it very difficult to crack their defense. Once we leveled though, it was wide open. Somewhat surprisingly, we came out on top. Towards the end of the first half, and into the 2nd half we were firmly in control. They threatened again near the end, got a goal off a corner, which our defense failed to mark well, but we held them off for the win.

Honda was much better in this game, as was Okazaki. Kakitani redeemed himself with a goal and assist, after botching the shot against Netherlands. Kiyotake was largely ineffective, and our defenders still can't keep a clean sheet, but it was a good match to watch.
 
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