On Sunday 28 October, the U-19 Japan National Team faced the U-19 Indonesia National Team at the AFC U-19 Championship Indonesia 2018 quarterfinals and won the match 2-0. With this win, the team has secured their entry into the FIFA U-20 World Cup Poland 2019.
The match started as the entire stadium was covered with supporters wearing the home team’s jersey colour red. Under a totally away environment, the U-19 Japan National Team started TANI Kosei (Gamba Osaka) in goal, along with SUGAWARA Yukinari (Nagoya Grampus U-18), HASHIOKA Daiki (Urawa Reds), KOBAYASHI Yuki (Vissel Kobe U-18), and HIGASHI Shunki (Sanfrecce Hiroshima Youth) forming the defence line. The team captain SAITO Mitsuki (Shonan Bellmare) joined ITO Hiroki (Jubilo Iwata) in the defensive midfield position, while ABE Hiroki (Kashima Antlers) and FUJIMOTO Kanya (Tokyo Verdy) were placed in the flanks. KUBO Takefusa (Yokohama F・Marinos) and MIYASHIRO Taisei (Kawasaki Frontale U-18) were named as the two forwards to complete the line-up.
The early minutes of the match saw Japan taking the initiative, as Indonesia lined up five players in their defence to counter the Japanese offence. The home side denied Japan from creating chances as they showcased tenacious efforts in their defence. Despite the dominance shown by Japan, the team struggled to find the net. In the 11th minute, Kubo delivered a cross into the box from a freekick earned in the left flank. Hashioka was there to connect with the ball and shook the net with his header, but the play was called off-sides. Japan was forced to utilise their first substitute in the 14th minute, when Fujimoto injured his leg, as SAITO Koki (Yokohama FC Youth) was brought into the match. A minute later, Sato initiated an attack in the right flank and sent a pass to Sugawara, who delivered a cross towards the goal. This time, Abe timed him self well strike the ball at goal, but his header went over the crossbar. Indonesia on the other hand, earned a freekick in the 29th minute. The delivery from this spot kick was sent into a dangerous area in front of the goal, but Indonesia cannot connect with this ball to score a goal. Japan broke through the right flank in the 30th minute when Sugawara, Kubo, and Miyashiro combined well to carry the ball upfront. Miyashiro’s attempt to penetrate the penalty area was denied by the opponents, and the shot taken by Sugawara off the loose ball was also blocked by the opposing defender. Indonesia counter attacked Japan in the 36th minute and managed to take a shot at the goal but came short from scoring......
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