National team coach Takeshi Okada has set Japan an ambitious semi-final target for the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa, assuming the Blue Samurai qualify. "We will seriously aim to finish in the top four at the World Cup," Okada, who led Japan to their first finals in 1998, was quoted as saying by the Asian Football Confederation website. "Some people may laugh it off but I think it is possible." The three-times Asian champions have had an inconsistent qualifying campaign so far and are currently second in their group with five games remaining. Their best World Cup performance was as co-hosts in 2002, when they reached the second round.
25 December 2008
Get FourFourTwo interviews, features and fun in your inbox every week. For free!
Thank you for registering for our Newsletter
We will send regular updates on the ongoing FourFourTwo updates to the email address you have supplied.