Monday, 14th June 2010
Japan vs Cameroon
Samuel Eto'o chose not to throw in the towel and had the chance to
make Roger Milla eat his words.
The first half-hour was rather disappointing, as neither team did
anything more than retreat after being caught offside.
Japan might have been happy with a point here, but Cameroon really
should have been doing something about trying to win the match.
Then in a goalmouth confusion, six minutes before half-time, Keisuke
Honda was left standing alone when the ball came over from the right; courtesy of Daisuke
Matsui. The CSKA Moscow player stayed cool under pressure, to relieve us all of our
The first corner of the match came at the start of the second-half.
That says everything about the first.
Samuel Eto'o looked more like he wanted win (for a second, or two), as
he shook off three Japanese players on his way into the penalty area early in the
Cameroon made a double substitution, with 15 minutes left, but Eto'o
was still left on the right instead of playing through the middle; while Japan started to
show the more desire to hold on to their win.
With five minutes left to play, Cameroon's Stéphane M'Bia cracked a
shot against the corner of the crossbar. Then at the other end, Keisuke Honda almost
forced Souleymanou into a mistake.
Although Samuel Eto'o tried something of a back-heeled, scissor-kick,
Roger Milla may be proved right; if the Cameroon can't win their next two games. And
against Holland and Denmark - on this showing - that's not going to be easy.
Japan 1 Cameroon 0
1:0 Keisuke Honda (39 mins)
Man of The Match:
Keisuke Honda - The engine behind the Japanese victory.
21 Eiji Kawashima; 5 Yuto Nagatomo, 4 Marcus Tulio Tanaka, 22 Yuji Nakazawa, 3 Yuichi
Komano; 7 Yasuhito Endo, 2 Yuki Abe, 17 Makoto Hasebe; 16 Yoshito Okubo, 8 Daisuke Matsui,
18 Keisuke Honda.
16 Souleymanou Hamidou; 2 Benoit Assou-Ekotto, 5 Sebastien Bassong, 3 Nicolas N'Koulou, 21
Joel Matip; 18 Eyong Enoh, 19 Stéphane M'Bia, 11 Jean Makoun; 15 Pierre Webo, 13 Maxim
Choupo-Moting, 9 Samuel Eto'o.
Olegario Benquerenca (Portugal)
63 Mins (Cameroon) - 10 Achille Emana on for 21 Joel Matip
69 Mins (Japan) - 9 Shinji Okazaki on for 8 Daisuke Matsui
75 Mins (Cameroon) - 8 Geremi Njitap on for 11 Jean Makoun
75 Mins (Cameroon) - 7 Mohamadou Idrissou on for 13 Maxim Choupo-Moting
81 Mins (Japan) - 12 Kisho Yano on for 16 Yoshito Okubo
88 Mins (Japan) - 20 Junichi Inamoto on for 17 Makoto Hasebe
72 Mins - Nicolas N'Koulou (Cameroon)
91 Mins - Yuki Abe (Japan)
0 Red Cards.
Since Japan beat Cameroon (2:0) in Niigata, during the 2001 Confederations Cup, the teams
have played two more friendly matches in Oita; with Japan winning (2:0) in 2007 and
neither team managing to score in 2003.
2010 World Cup Finals - Knockout Stage.
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