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Thursday, 7 January 2010

Japan's Young Guns Clinch Asian Cup Place

Japan's youngsters got off to slow start, being pushed back by the lively home team and finding themselves 2-0 down in the first half. Fortunately, Sota Hirayama pulled one back before the break, and the team went one to win the game 3-2. The FC Tokyo striker came off the bench when the team was trailing 1-0, but made the most of his opportunity to press his claim for a place in the squad for the World Cup.

Japan
Shuichi Gonda
Kosuke Ota, Maya Yoshida, Naoya Kikuchi, Tomoaki Makino
Kazuya Yamamura, Takuji Yonemoto, Mu Kanazaki, Naoki Yamada (Sota Hirayama 20), Yosuke Kashiwagi
Kazuma Watanabe (Kensuke Nagai 84)

Other Coverage
Japan Times: Hirayama's hat trick lifts Japan by Yemen
Daily Gomiuri: Hirayama triples up in debut
ESPN: Japan seal place at 2011 Asian Cup finals
AFC: YEM 2-3 JPN – Hirayama hat-trick rescues Japan

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