KNYSNA - Denmark coach Morten Olsen believes winning at the World Cup is like mixing a strong cocktail - you need the right ingredients, in the right measures if you want to leave the other guy with a hangover.
Olsen offered no name for the concoction he plans serving up to Japan when they meet in Rustenburg on Thursday in a Group E showdown but a Danish Dagger might do the trick as they try to dash Asian hopes and move onto the knockout stage.
"The cocktail is important," explained Olsen. "At the World Cup it is always important you have some players who have been there before.
"But it's also important you have some young enthusiastic players who haven't."
Greeted by local fans blowing vuvuzela trumpets and a brigade of Japanese media, the Danes returned to their training base on the Eastern Cape on Sunday in upbeat mood and their destiny in their own hands following a riveting 2-1 win over Cameroon.
Denmark has never exited a World Cup before reaching the knockout stage and if they are to keep that record intact they must beat Japan, who also have three points and a better goal difference.
"That is the first final; we hope to reach the next," said Olsen. "That's the name of the game.
Camaraderie is something that Denmark also has in good measure, Olsen hailing his team for their determined comeback effort against Cameroon after going down 1-0 as heroic.
But Denmark will face a much different challenge in Rustenberg where Africa flair will give way to Asian organisation.
"The Japanese team has showed fantastic character in the games they have played it's going to be a tight game for sure," Denmark keeper Thomas Sorensen told Reuters.
"It will be a different game than the Cameroon game because the Japanese will sit back and try to counter-attack.
"They won't leave as much space as Cameroon did, it will be up to us to open them up and hopefully get an early goal that will force them forward.comments