Japan national football team

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Shirt badge/Association crest
(Samurai Blue)
(Zac Japan)
(Japan Football Association)
Sub-confederationEAFF (East Asia)
ConfederationAFC (Asia)
Head coachAlberto Zaccheroni
CaptainMakoto Hasebe
Most capsYasuhito Endō (140)
Top scorerKunishige Kamamoto (80)
Home stadiumSaitama Stadium 2002
FIFA ranking48 Decrease 4
Highest FIFA ranking9 (February 1998)
Lowest FIFA ranking66 (December 1992)
Elo ranking25
Highest Elo ranking8 (August 2001, March 2002)
Lowest Elo ranking112 (September 1962)
First colours
Second colours
First international
 Japan 0–5 Republic of China (1912–1949) China
(Tokyo; 9 May 1917)
Biggest win
 Japan 15–0 Philippines 
(Tokyo; 27 September 1967)
Biggest defeat
 Japan 2–15 Philippines 
(Tokyo; 10 May 1917)
World Cup
Appearances5 (First in 1998)
Best resultRound of 16, 2002, 2010
Asian Cup
Appearances7 (First in 1988)
Best resultChampions, 1992, 2000, 2004, 2011
Copa América
Appearances1 (First in 1999)
Best resultRound 1, 1999
Confederations Cup
Appearances4 (First in 1995)
Best resultRunners-Up, 2001
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Shirt badge/Association crest
(Samurai Blue)
(Zac Japan)
(Japan Football Association)
Sub-confederationEAFF (East Asia)
ConfederationAFC (Asia)
Head coachAlberto Zaccheroni
CaptainMakoto Hasebe
Most capsYasuhito Endō (140)
Top scorerKunishige Kamamoto (80)
Home stadiumSaitama Stadium 2002
FIFA ranking48 Decrease 4
Highest FIFA ranking9 (February 1998)
Lowest FIFA ranking66 (December 1992)
Elo ranking25
Highest Elo ranking8 (August 2001, March 2002)
Lowest Elo ranking112 (September 1962)
First colours
Second colours
First international
 Japan 0–5 Republic of China (1912–1949) China
(Tokyo; 9 May 1917)
Biggest win
 Japan 15–0 Philippines 
(Tokyo; 27 September 1967)
Biggest defeat
 Japan 2–15 Philippines 
(Tokyo; 10 May 1917)
World Cup
Appearances5 (First in 1998)
Best resultRound of 16, 2002, 2010
Asian Cup
Appearances7 (First in 1988)
Best resultChampions, 1992, 2000, 2004, 2011
Copa América
Appearances1 (First in 1999)
Best resultRound 1, 1999
Confederations Cup
Appearances4 (First in 1995)
Best resultRunners-Up, 2001

The Japan national football team (サッカー日本代表 Soccer Nippon Daihyō?) represents Japan in association football and is operated by the Japan Football Association (JFA), the governing body for association football in Japan. Their head coach is Alberto Zaccheroni.

Japan is the most successful football team in Asia, having qualified for the last five consecutive FIFA World Cups with second round advancements in 2002 & 2010, and having won the AFC Asian Cup a record four times in 1992, 2000, 2004 & 2011. To this they add a 2001 FIFA Confederations Cup second place.

The Japanese team is commonly known by the fans and media as Soccer Nippon Daihyō (サッカー日本代表?), Nippon Daihyō (日本代表?), or Daihyō (代表?) as abbreviated expressions. Although the team does not have an official nickname as such, it is often known by the name of the manager. For example, under Takeshi Okada, the team was known as Okada Japan (岡田ジャパン Okada Japan?).[1] Recently the team has been known or nicknamed as the "Samurai Blue", while news media still refer it to by manager's last name, as "Zaccheroni Japan" (ザッケローニジャパン Zakkerōni Japan?), or "Zac Japan" (ザックジャパン Zakku Japan?) in short.


Japan against Brazil at Signal Iduna Park in Dortmund, Germany in the 2006 FIFA World Cup

Japan's first major achievement in international football came in the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City, where the team won the bronze medal. Although this result earned the sport increased recognition in Japan, the absence of a professional domestic league hindered its growth and Japan would not qualify for the FIFA World Cup until 30 years later.[2]

In 1991, the owners of the semi-professional Japan Soccer League agreed to disband the league and re-form as the professional J. League, partly to raise the sport's profile and to strengthen the national team program. With the launch of the new league in 1993, interest in football and the national team grew.

However, in its first attempt to qualify with professional players, Japan narrowly missed a ticket to the 1994 FIFA World Cup after failing to beat Iraq in the final match of the qualification round, remembered by fans as the Agony of Doha.

The nation's first ever FIFA World Cup appearance was in 1998, where they lost all three matches. Japan's first two fixtures went 1–0 in favor of Argentina and Croatia, despite playing well in both games. Their campaign ended with an unexpected 2–1 defeat to rank outsiders Jamaica.

Four years later, Japan co-hosted the 2002 FIFA World Cup with South Korea. Despite being held to a 2–2 draw by Belgium in their opening game, the Japanese team advanced to the second round with a 1–0 win over Russia and a 2–0 victory against Tunisia. However, they subsequently exited the tournament during the Round of 16, after losing 1–0 to eventual third-place finishers Turkey.

On June 8, 2005, Japan qualified for the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, its third consecutive World Cup, by beating North Korea 2–0 on neutral ground. However, Japan failed to advance to the Round of 16 after finishing the group without a win, losing to Australia 1–3, drawing Croatia 0–0 and losing to Brazil 1–4.

Japan has had considerably more success in the Asian Cup, taking home the winner's trophy in four of the last six finals, in 1992, 2000, 2004 and 2011. Their principal continental rivals are South Korea, followed by Saudi Arabia, and most recently Australia.

Japan is the only team from outside the Americas to participate in the Copa América, having been invited in 1999 and 2011.[3]

During the 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification, in the fourth round of the Asian Qualifiers, Japan became the first team other than the host South Africa to qualify after defeating Uzbekistan 1–0 away. Japan was put in Group E along with the Netherlands, Denmark and Cameroon.[4] Japan won its opening game of the 2010 FIFA World Cup defeating Cameroon 1–0 but subsequently lost to the Netherlands 0–1 before defeating Denmark 3–1 to advance to the next round against Paraguay. In the first knockout round Japan were eliminated from the competition following penalties after a 0–0 draw against Paraguay.

After the World Cup, head coach Takeshi Okada resigned. He was replaced by former Juventus and AC Milan coach Alberto Zaccheroni. In his first few matches, Japan recorded victories over Guatemala (2–1) and Paraguay (1–0), as well as one of their best ever results – a 1–0 victory over Argentina.

At the start of 2011 Japan participated in the 2011 AFC Asian Cup in Qatar. On 29 January, they beat Australia 1–0 in the final after extra time, their fourth Asian Cup triumph and allowing them to qualify for FIFA Confederations Cup.[5]

Japan then started their road to World Cup 2014 Brazil with numerous qualifiers. Throughout they suffered only two losses to Uzbekistan and Jordan, and drawing against Australia. Afterwards on October 12, Japan picked up a historic 1–0 victory over France, a team they had never before defeated. After a 1–1 draw with Australia they qualified for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, becoming the first nation (outside of Brazil, who is hosting the tournament) to qualify.

Japan started their 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup with a 3–0 loss to Brazil. They were then eliminated from the competition after losing to Italy 3–4 but received praise for their style of play in the match. They lost their final game 1-2 against Mexico and finished 4th place in Group A in the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup. One month later, in the EAFF East Asian Cup, they started out with a 3-3 draw to China. They then beat Australia 3-2 and beat South Korea 2-1 in the 3rd and final match in the 2013 EAFF East Asian Cup to claim their first title in history.

Team image[edit]

Fan Chanting[edit]

Japanese national team supporters are known for chanting "Nippon Ole" (Nippon is the Japanese term for Japan) at home matches.[6]

Kits and colours[edit]

Japan's current kit is provided by Adidas, the team's official apparel sponsor. The home kit consists of a Navy blue jersey with a red line down the center with 'all support for Japan' faintly written on it, navy blue shorts with bright blue patches on the side and navy blue socks with a red line down the center. The away kit consists of a white jersey, white shorts, and white socks all with. In 2011, Japan switched temporarily the color of the numbers from white to gold.

Prior to Adidas, the team's official apparel sponsor were the Japanese brand Asics and Puma. The national team kit design has gone through several alterations in the past. In the early 80s, the kit was white with blue trim. When Japan was coached by Kenzo Yokoyama (1988–1991) the kits were red and white, matching the colors of Japan's national flag. The kits worn for the 1992 AFC Asian Cup consisted of white stripes (stilized to form a wing) with red diamonds. During Japan's first World Cup appearance in 1998, the national team kits were blue jerseys with red and white flame designs on the sleeves, and designed by JFA (with the sponsor alternating each year between Asics, Puma and Adidas).

Japan uses blue and white rather than red and white due to a superstition. In its first major international competition, the 1936 Summer Olympics, Japan used a blue kit in the match against Sweden and Japan won the match by a score of 3–2.[7]

Also, the Japanese Football Association logo has some yellow, it represents the fair play (honesty) in Japanese tradition, all surrounding by blue on the jersey that means youth in Japanese tradition, that also explains the colours of the uniform which could be translated as "the fair play purpose supported on the power of youth".



Japan has one of the highest sponsorship incomes for a national squad. In 2006 their sponsorship income amounted to over 16.5 million pounds.

Primary sponsors include Adidas, Kirin, Saison Card International, FamilyMart, JAL, Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance, Sony, Asahi Shinbun, Konami, Mizuho Financial and Audi.[8]


The mascots are "Karappe" (カラッペ) and "Karara" (カララ), two Yatagarasu wearing the Japan national football team uniform. The mascots were designed by Japanese manga artist Susumu Matsushita. Each year when a new kit is launched, the mascots change uniforms.

Recent results and fixtures[edit]

6 Feb 2013 LatviaW3–0Japan Home's Stadium Kobe, Kobe, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2013)
22 Mar 2013 CanadaW2–1Qatar Khalifa International Stadium, Doha, QatarInternational Friendly
26 Mar 2013 JordanL1–2Jordan King Abdullah Stadium, Amman, Jordan2014 FIFA World Cup qualification (AFC) Fourth Round
30 May 2013 BulgariaL0–2Japan Toyota Stadium, Toyota, Aichi, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2013)
4 Jun 2013 AustraliaD1–1Japan Saitama Stadium 2002, Saitama, Japan2014 FIFA World Cup qualification (AFC) Fourth Round
11 Jun 2013 IraqW1–0Qatar Grand Hamad Stadium, Doha, Qatar2014 FIFA World Cup qualification (AFC) Fourth Round
15 Jun 2013 BrazilL0–3Brazil Estádio Nacional de Brasília, Brasília, Brazil2013 FIFA Confederations Cup
19 Jun 2013 ItalyL3–4Brazil Arena Cidade da Copa, Recife, Brazil2013 FIFA Confederations Cup
22 Jun 2013 MexicoL1–2Brazil Mineirão, Belo Horizonte, Brazil2013 FIFA Confederations Cup
21 Jul 2013 China PRD3–3South Korea Seoul World Cup Stadium, Seoul, South Korea2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
25 Jul 2013 AustraliaW3–2South Korea Hwaseong Stadium, Hwaseong, South Korea2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
28 Jul 2013 South KoreaW2–1South Korea Jamsil Olympic Stadium, Seoul, South Korea2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
14 Aug 2013 UruguayL2–4Japan Miyagi Stadium, Rifu, Miyagi, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2013)
6 Sep 2013 GuatemalaW3–0Japan Nagai Stadium, Osaka, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2013)
10 Sep 2013 GhanaW3–1Japan International Stadium Yokohama, Kanagawa, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2013)
11 Oct 2013 SerbiaL0–2Serbia Karađorđe Stadium, Novi Sad, SerbiaInternational Friendly
15 Oct 2013 BelarusL0–1Belarus Torpedo Stadium, Zhodino, BelarusInternational Friendly
16 Nov 2013 NetherlandsD2–2Belgium Cristal Arena, Genk, BelgiumInternational Friendly
19 Nov 2013 BelgiumW3–2Belgium King Baudouin Stadium, Brussels, BelgiumInternational Friendly
5 Mar 2014 New ZealandJapan National Olympic Stadium, Tokyo, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2014)
27 May 2014TBAJapan Saitama Stadium 2002, Saitama, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2014)
14 June 2014 Ivory CoastBrazil Arena Pernambuco, Recife, Brazil2014 FIFA World Cup
19 June 2014 GreeceBrazil Arena das Dunas, Natal, Brazil2014 FIFA World Cup
24 June 2014 ColombiaBrazil Arena Pantanal, Cuiabá, Brazil2014 FIFA World Cup
5 September 2014TBAJapan Sapporo Dome, Sapporo, Hokkaido, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2014)
9 September 2014TBAJapan Nissan Stadium, Yokohama, Kanagawa, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2014)
14 November 2014TBAJapan Toyota Stadium, Toyota, Aichi, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2014)
18 November 2014TBAJapan Nagai Stadium, Osaka, JapanInternational Friendly (Kirin Challenge Cup 2014)

* Japan score always listed first

      Win       Draw       Loss


Head CoachItaly Alberto Zaccheroni
Assistant CoachItaly Stefano Agresti
Fitness CoachItaly Eugenio Albarella
Goalkeeping CoachItaly Maurizio Guido
Technical AssistantJapan Ichiro Wada
Technical AssistantItaly Giampaolo Colautti


Current squad[edit]

Squad selected for the friendlies matches vs. Netherlands on 16 November and Belgium on 19 November 2013.[9]

Caps and goals as of 19 November 2013 after match against Belgium.
0#0Pos.PlayerDate of birth (age)CapsGoalsClub
11GKEiji Kawashima(1983-03-20) 20 March 1983 (age 30)530Belgium Standard Liège
121GKShūsaku Nishikawa(1986-06-18) 18 June 1986 (age 27)120Japan Urawa Red Diamonds
231GKShūichi Gonda(1989-03-03) 3 March 1989 (age 24)20Japan FC Tokyo
22DFAtsuto Uchida(1988-03-27) 27 March 1988 (age 25)651Germany Schalke 04
32DFGōtoku Sakai(1991-03-14) 14 March 1991 (age 22)110Germany Stuttgart
52DFYūto Nagatomo(1986-09-12) 12 September 1986 (age 27)663Italy Internazionale
62DFMasato Morishige(1987-05-21) 21 May 1987 (age 26)60Japan FC Tokyo
152DFYasuyuki Konno(1983-01-25) 25 January 1983 (age 30)781Japan Gamba Osaka
192DFMasahiko Inoha(1985-08-28) 28 August 1985 (age 28)201Japan Júbilo Iwata
212DFHiroki Sakai(1990-04-12) 12 April 1990 (age 23)140Germany Hannover 96
222DFMaya Yoshida(1988-08-24) 24 August 1988 (age 25)372England Southampton
43MFKeisuke Honda(1986-06-13) 13 June 1986 (age 27)5220Italy Milan
73MFYasuhito Endō(1980-01-28) 28 January 1980 (age 33)14012Japan Gamba Osaka
103MFShinji Kagawa(1989-03-17) 17 March 1989 (age 24)5316England Manchester United
133MFHajime Hosogai(1986-06-10) 10 June 1986 (age 27)251Germany Hertha Berlin
143MFHideto Takahashi(1987-10-17) 17 October 1987 (age 26)70Japan FC Tokyo
163MFHotaru Yamaguchi(1990-10-06) 6 October 1990 (age 23)80Japan Cerezo Osaka
173MFMakoto Hasebe (Captain)(1984-01-18) 18 January 1984 (age 29)772Germany Nürnberg
84FWHiroshi Kiyotake(1989-11-12) 12 November 1989 (age 24)231Germany Nürnberg
94FWShinji Okazaki(1986-04-16) 16 April 1986 (age 27)7236Germany Mainz 05
114FWYōichirō Kakitani(1990-01-03) 3 January 1990 (age 24)94Japan Cerezo Osaka
184FWYūya Ōsako(1990-05-18) 18 May 1990 (age 23)63Germany 1860 München
204FWTakashi Inui(1988-06-02) 2 June 1988 (age 25)120Germany Eintracht Frankfurt

Recent call-ups[edit]

The following players have also been called up to the Japan squad within the last 12 months.

Pos.PlayerDate of birth (age)CapsGoalsClubLatest call-up
GKTakuto Hayashi(1982-08-09) 9 August 1982 (age 31)00Japan Sanfrecce Hiroshima2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
DFTomoaki Makino(1987-05-11) 11 May 1987 (age 26)141Japan Urawa Red Diamondsv.  Ghana, 10 September 2013
DFYūichi Komano(1981-07-25) 25 July 1981 (age 32)781Japan Júbilo Iwatav.  Uruguay, 14 August 2013
DFYūzō Kurihara(1983-09-18) 18 September 1983 (age 30)203Japan Yokohama F. Marinos2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
DFYūhei Tokunaga(1983-09-25) 25 September 1983 (age 30)90Japan FC Tokyo2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
DFRyōta Moriwaki(1986-04-06) 6 April 1986 (age 27)30Japan Urawa Red Diamonds2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
DFKazuhiko Chiba(1985-06-21) 21 June 1985 (age 28)10Japan Sanfrecce Hiroshima2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
DFDaisuke Suzuki(1990-01-29) 29 January 1990 (age 23)10Japan Kashiwa Reysol2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
DFHiroki Mizumoto(1985-09-12) 12 September 1985 (age 28)50Japan Sanfrecce Hiroshimav.  Latvia, 6 February 2013
MFToshihiro Aoyama(1986-02-22) 22 February 1986 (age 27)30Japan Sanfrecce Hiroshimav.  Ghana, 10 September 2013
MFYōjiro Takahagi(1986-08-02) 2 August 1986 (age 27)20Japan Sanfrecce Hiroshima2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
MFTakahiro Ōgihara(1991-10-05) 5 October 1991 (age 22)10Japan Cerezo Osaka2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
MFKengo Nakamura(1980-10-31) 31 October 1980 (age 33)686Japan Kawasaki Frontale2013 FIFA Confederations Cup
MFYūki Ōtsu(1990-03-24) 24 March 1990 (age 23)20Netherlands VVV-Venlov.  Jordan, 26 March 2013
FWManabu Saitō(1990-04-04) 4 April 1990 (age 23)31Japan Yokohama F. Marinosv.  Netherlands, 16 November 2013
FWMike Havenaar(1987-05-20) 20 May 1987 (age 26)174Netherlands Vitessev.  Belarus, 15 October 2013
FWMasato Kudo(1990-05-06) 6 May 1990 (age 23)42Japan Kashiwa Reysolv.  Ghana, 10 September 2013
FWYōhei Toyoda(1985-04-11) 11 April 1985 (age 28)30Japan Sagan Tosuv.  Uruguay, 14 August 2013
FWGenki Haraguchi(1991-05-09) 9 May 1991 (age 22)30Japan Urawa Red Diamonds2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
FWHiroki Yamada(1988-12-27) 27 December 1988 (age 25)20Japan Júbilo Iwata2013 EAFF East Asian Cup
FWRyōichi Maeda(1981-10-09) 9 October 1981 (age 32)3310Japan Júbilo Iwata2013 FIFA Confederations Cup
FWKeigo Higashi(1990-07-20) 20 July 1990 (age 23)00Japan FC Tokyov.  Australia, 4 June 2013


As of 15 November 2013
Statistics below are from matches which the Japan Football Association consider as official.[10][11]
Most Caps
1Yasuhito Endō140122002–
2Masami Ihara12251988–1999
3Yoshikatsu Kawaguchi11601997–2010
4Yuji Nakazawa110171999–2010
5Shunsuke Nakamura98242000–2010
6Kazuyoshi Miura89551990–2000
7Kunishige Kamamoto84801964–1977
8Junichi Inamoto8252000–2010
=Alessandro Santos8272002–2006
10Satoshi Tsunami7821980–1995
=Yūichi Komano7812005–
=Yasuyuki Konno7812005–
Top Goalscorers
1Kunishige Kamamoto80841964–1977
2Kazuyoshi Miura55891990–2000
3Hiromi Hara38761978–1988
4Shinji Okazaki36722008–
5Takuya Takagi27441992–1997
6Kazushi Kimura26541979–1986
7Shunsuke Nakamura24982000–2010
8Naohiro Takahara23572000–2008
9Masashi Nakayama21541990–2003
10Keisuke Honda20522008–


FIFA World Cup
AFC Asian Cup
FIFA Confederations Cup
Olympic Games
EAFF East Asian Cup
Copa América


As of 14 August 2013
MatchesWonDrawLostWin %
Japan Hirokazu Ninomiya1951311133.33%
Japan Shigemaru Takenokoshi1951–1956, 1958–195924661225%
Japan Hidetoki Takahashi1957, 1960–19621432921.43%
Japan Taizo Kawamoto195820020%
Japan Ken Naganuma1962–1969, 1972–19767334122746.57%
Japan Shunichiro Okano1970–197119112657.90%
Japan Hiroshi Ninomiya1976–197827661522.22%
Japan Yukio Shimomura1979–19801484257.14%
Japan Masashi Watanabe1980320166.67%
Japan Saburō Kawabuchi1980–19811032530%
Japan Takaji Mori1981–1985432251651.16%
Japan Yoshinobu Ishii1986–198717112464.70%
Japan Kenzo Yokoyama1988–199124571220.83%
Netherlands Hans Ooft1992–199327176462.96%
Brazil Falcão1994934233.33%
Japan Shu Kamo1994–1997462481452.17%
Japan Takeshi Okada1997–1998, 2007–20106531181647.69%
France Philippe Troussier1998–20025023151246%
Brazil Zico2002–20067138151853.52%
Bosnia and Herzegovina Ivica Osim2006–200720132565%
Italy Alberto Zaccheroni2010–5028111156%


*Denotes draws includes knockout matches decided on penalty shootouts. Red border indicates that the tournament was hosted on home soil. Gold, silver, bronze backgrounds indicates 1st, 2nd and 3rd finishes respectively. Bold text indicates best finish in tournament.

FIFA World Cup[edit]

FIFA World Cup Finals RecordQualifications Record
Uruguay 1930Did Not Enter------
Italy 1934------
France 1938Withdrew------
Brazil 1950Banned------
Switzerland 1954Did Not Qualify201137
Sweden 1958Did Not Enter------
Chile 1962Did Not Qualify200214
England 1966Did Not Enter------
Mexico 1970Did Not Qualify402248
West Germany 1974410354
Argentina 1978401305
Spain 1982420242
Mexico 19868512155
Italy 1990623173
United States 199413931356
France 1998Group Stage31st300314159515112
South KoreaJapan 2002Round of 169th421153------
Germany 2006Group Stage28th301227121101255
South Africa 2010Round of 169th42114214842239
Brazil 2014QualifiedTBD14833308
Russia 2018To be determined------
Qatar 2022To be determined------

AFC Asian Cup[edit]

AFC Asian Cup Finals RecordQualifications Record
Hong Kong 1956Withdrew------
South Korea 1960------
Israel 1964------
Iran 1968Did Not Qualify431084
Thailand 1972Withdrew------
Iran 1976Did Not Qualify411234
Kuwait 1980Withdrew------
Singapore 1984------
Qatar 1988Group Stage10th401306421163
Japan 1992Champions1st532063------
United Arab Emirates 1996Quarter-Finals5th430173------
Lebanon 2000Champions1st65102163300150
China 2004Champions1st6420136------
IndonesiaMalaysiaThailandVietnam 2007Fourth Place4th62311176501152
Qatar 2011Champions1st64201466501174
Australia 2015Qualified------

FIFA Confederations Cup[edit]

FIFA Confederations Cup record
YearRoundPositionPldWD *LGFGASquad
Saudi Arabia 1992Did Not Qualify
Saudi Arabia 1995Group Stage6th200218Squad
Saudi Arabia 1997Did Not Qualify
Mexico 1999
South Korea Japan 2001Runners-up2nd531161Squad
France 2003Group Stage6th310243Squad
Germany 2005Group Stage5th311144Squad
South Africa 2009Did Not Qualify
Brazil 2013Group Stage7th300349Squad
Russia 2017To Be Determined
Qatar 2021

Olympic Games[edit]

Since 1992, the Olympic team has been drawn from a squad with a maximum of three players over 23 years of age, and the achievements of this team are not generally regarded as part of the national team's records, nor are the statistics credited to the players' international records.

Olympic Games Record
United Kingdom 1908Did Not Enter
Sweden 1912
Belgium 1920
France 1924
Netherlands 1928
Germany 1936Quarter-Finals8th2101310
United Kingdom 1948Banned
Finland 1952Did Not Enter
Australia 1956Group Stage10th100102
Italy 1960Did Not Qualify
Japan 1964Quarter-Finals8th310259
Mexico 1968Third Place3rd632198
Germany 1972Did Not Enter
Canada 1976Did Not Qualify
Soviet Union 1980
United States 1984
South Korea 1988
Total9/23Third Place31134144054

Copa América[edit]

Japan is the only team from outside the Americas to participate in the Copa América, having been invited in both 1999 and 2011.[3] However, Japan declined their invitation on May 16, 2011 after events related with the Tōhoku earthquake and difficulty to release some Japanese players from European teams to play as a replacement. On May 17, 2011, CONMEBOL invited Costa Rica to replace Japan in the competition, the Costa Rican Football Federation accepted their invitation later that day.

CONMEBOL Copa América record
Paraguay 1999Group Stage10th301238
Argentina 2011Withdrew
Chile 2015InvitedTBD
TotalGroup Stage1/43301238



Bronze Medal (1): 1968
Runners-Up (1): 2001


Champions (4): 1992, 2000, 2004, 2011
Years (5): 2000, 2005, 2008, 2010, 2011


Champions (3): 1992, 1995, 1998
Champions (1): 2013
Champions (1): 1930


Champions (2): 1993, 2007
Champions (1): 2001
Champions (11): 1991, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2001, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011
Years (1): 2002

See also[edit]


  1. ^ A common methodology of nickname creation is done by taking the last name of incumbent head coach followed by "Japan". Past teams have been referred to as, "Osim Japan" (オシムジャパン Oshimu Japan?), "Zico Japan" (ジーコジャパン Jīko Japan?), "Troussier Japan" (トルシエジャパン Torushie Japan?).
  2. ^ Matsushima, Ken. "History of the J. League". Rising Sun News. Archived from the original on 2006-05-12. Retrieved 2006-07-07. 
  3. ^ a b Japan Invited To Copa America 2011 Along With Mexico Goal.com 2 Jun 2009
  4. ^ Hongo, Jun, "SOCCER IN JAPAN: Japan team has foot in World Cup door but can it kick?", Japan Times, February 9, 2010, p. 3.
  5. ^ "Australia 0–1 Japan (AET". Daily Telegraph. 2011-01-29. Retrieved 2011-02-02. 
  6. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=D3bNr6pz0xA
  7. ^ http://www.kansas.com/2011/07/17/1936597/how-have-previous-johnny-bench.html.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  8. ^ "Audi Japan signs with JFA". Japan Football Association. 25 May 2011. Retrieved 6 June 2011. 
  9. ^ http://headlines.yahoo.co.jp/hl?a=20131003-00000030-nksports-socc
  10. ^ Yoon Hyung-Jin. "Japan International Match - List of Full International Matches". RSSSF. Retrieved 1 July 2012. 
  11. ^ Mamrud, Roberto. "Japan - Record International Players". RSSSF. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
1988 Saudi Arabia 
Champions Of Asia
1992 Japan  (1st Title)
Succeeded by
1996 Saudi Arabia 
Preceded by
1996 Saudi Arabia 
Champions Of Asia
2000 Japan  (2nd Title)
Succeeded by
2004 Japan 
Preceded by
2000 Japan 
Champions Of Asia
2004 Japan  (3rd Title)
Succeeded by
2007 Iraq 
Preceded by
2007 Iraq 
Champions Of Asia
2011 Japan  (4th Title)
Succeeded by
Preceded by
2001 Ichiro Suzuki
Japan Professional Sports Grand Prize
2002 Japan National Football Team
Succeeded by
2003 Hideki Matsui