Recently Japan Football Association announced officially that they would dismiss Vahid Halilhodžić, the head coach of Japan national team. Halilhodžić was appointed as the Japan national team’s new manager on 7 March 2015.
As we all know, the 2018 FIFA World Cup will be hosted from 14 June to 15 July, but the current Japan national team is worrying. It performed bad in the two warm-up matches against Mali and Ukraine in March. Although Halilhodžić helped the Japan national team to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, the team didn’t perform well in the 2017 EAFF E-1 Football Championship. As the host country, it was defeated by the South Korean team and eventually lost the championship. Japan national team only won three games among nine games after the 2018 qualifying games in Asia, which resulted largely in the dismissal of Halilhodžić.
The officials of the JFA who went to Europe with the Japan national team in March were worried about the current status of the team and believed that the current team must make changes. After the match against Mali, many national team players questioned Halilhodžić’s tactics, and a lack of “communication and trust” led to the final dismissal.
Akira Nishino serves as the new coach of Japan national team just two months before World Cup. “There is always a risk when you change managers,” said JFA President Kozo Tashima at a news conference in Tokyo. “There is also a risk when you don’t change managers. If it was guaranteed that just by changing managers you would magically make the team better, we would do that. But we have considered all the risks and listened to all points of view.”
Akira Nishino helped Kawashiwa Reysol win J. League Cup; he helped Gamba Osaka win J1 League, Emperor’s Cup, J. League Cup, Japanese Super Cup and AFC Champions League. As an excellent manager, he was named as J. League Manager of the Year in 2000 and 2005 and AFC Coach of the Year in 2008. Perhaps Nishino can surprise the world with his unique vision and tactics in the 2018 World Cup.
The match jerseys designed for Japan national team players are the most comfortable and the most breathable jerseys. Let’s have a look at the home shirt 2016.
Based on a special design theme “青の’調和’(Harmonious Blue)”, the shirt is used the traditional Samurai blue. Furthermore, the color is deeper than any one of previous shirts. There are horizontal stripes in eleven different gradated shades of blue representing 11 players at football fields who have different personalities form a strong and united team. The red line, through the middle of these blue stripes, represents not only the supporters of the national team but also the 12th player. The federation badge and Japan national flag are embroidered on the chest showing respect for the country. Besides, classic Adidas three stripes are placed on both sides of the shirt, symbolizing victory.