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Shoya Nakajima scores as Japan edge Bolivia in friendly

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Shoya Nakajima came off the bench to score the only goal in a 1-0 victory for Japan over Bolivia in an international friendly in Kobe on Tuesday.

The diminutive forward, who became the most expensive Japanese player when he moved to Al-Duhail in January, scored the winner in the 76th minute having come off the bench 15 minutes earlier.

Japan coach Hajime Moriyasu made a swathe of changes after his side's loss in another friendly against South American opposition last Friday, when they played Colombia,...

Falcao penalty earns Colombia earns win over Japan in Queiroz's first game

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Colombia's record goal scorer Radamel Falcao scored from the penalty spot to defeat Japan 1-0 on Friday and hand new coach Carlos Queiroz a victory in his first game.

Falcao's 33rd goal for his country came after a penalty was awarded for a handball by Japan's Takehiro Tomiyasu in the 64th minute in Yokohama.

Colombia's triumph was a small measure of revenge for the defeat they suffered by Japan in the group stage of last year's World Cup and gives former Iran boss Queiroz the perfect start to his...

Qatar's Asian Cup win shows that possession could be poison in international football

From the universality of Total Football to the Petrosian-like stoutness of Jose Mourinho, it has always been said football has an evolutionary or permutable quality.

Rules have sometimes influenced dominant tactics, much like changes to offside laws creating the W-M formation, or the back-pass rule facilitating the implementation of targeted pressing and higher defensive lines.

More often than not, however, tactical shifts and trends are based on ideology.

And so when Qatar comfortably defeated...

Qatar defeat Japan to secure first-ever Asian Cup crown

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Almoez Ali scored with a spectacular overhead kick for a record ninth goal of the Asian Cup to set Qatar on their way to a first continental title with a stunning 3-1 win over four-times champions Japan on Friday.

Ali's early goal took him past Ali Daei's 1996 tally and, combined with a 27th minute strike from Abdulaziz Hatem and a late Akram Afif penalty, helped the Qataris make an emphatic statement ahead of their hosting of the 2022 World Cup.

Sudan-born Ali's record goal came after a protest...

Borussia Dortmund's Shinji Kagawa joins Besiktas on loan

Shinji Kagawa, who joined Dortmund in 2010, will spend the rest of the season on loan at Besiktas.

Borussia Dortmund midfielder Shinji Kagawa has joined Turkey's Besiktas on loan until the end of the season, the Bundesliga leaders said on Thursday.

A Bundesliga winner with Dortmund in 2011 and 2012, the 29-year-old Japan international was originally signed for €350,000 from Cerezo Osaka in Japan's second division in 2010.

He had a two-year spell at Manchester United from 2012-14 before returning to the Ruhr valley club.

He has struggled to secure playing time under coach Lucien Favre this...