When Japan rocked out of Tokyo in 2014 for the Brazil World Cup, 700 fans showed up at Narita airport in Tokyo to cheer them off, as there was big hopes Japan would get out of a group which was considered to be a relatively good draw for the Samurai Blue.
That turned out to be false hope as Japan only managed to pick up one point at the finals in Brazil, and the build up to the World Cup in Russia has been very un-Japanese like as they have sacked the manager who got them to the finals just a few weeks before the big show was about to kick off.
With claims being made of communication breakdown between Halilhodzic and his star players, coupled with miserable results after qualifying prompted the JFA (Japanese Football Association) into making a change of management. The official reason was because of poor results, and bad communication among management and players, the unofficial reason seems to be that Halilhodzic was at the very least thinking of dropping Keisuske Honda, Shinji Okakzaki and Shinjia Kagawa, who are huge stars in Japan and are the JFA’s most marketable players on the world stage.
According to one prominent foreign journo on twitter, the press conference in Tokyo to announce the squad wasn’t exactly greeted with any excited glee as the same old codgers who failed in Brazil have been picked again to have another stab at what is most likely their last World Cup playing together.
With all the commotion that is going on in the background of the Japanese camp, and none of the exciting young players being selected, expectations are at an all-time low in Japan with only 150 fans turning out to Narita airport to shout Japan onwards to victory, it’s definitely unlike Japan to be in this situation before the World Cup has kicked off but they have to be one of the worst prepared nations at the finals now as they risk self-implosion and the fans know it’s a balls up too. It will be a miracle if Japan have any success at the finals.