The Asahi Shimbun reports the sad news that Jubilo Iwata stopper Yoshi Kawaguchi ruptured his right achilles tendon in training today and faces a spell of six months on the sideline. The former number one choice for the Japan national team underwent surgery shortly after. Kawaguchi is remembered in the UK mainly for his brief time at Portsmouth Football Club, where he struggled to adapt to the physical nature of English football but nonetheless impressed supporters with his positive attitude and good-natured character.
The newspaper also reports that FCC Turbine Potsdam’s Yuki Nagasato netted twice in their 3-0 victory win to FC Rossiyanka in the second leg of their UEFA Women’s Champions League quarter-final, giving the German side a 5-0 aggregate victory. Potsdam will meet Olympique Lyonnais in the semi-final, potentially pitting the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup winner against fellow countrywoman Ami Otaki.
Two applications have been approved to become associate members of the L.League, confirms that Mainichi Shimbun. The challenge league teams Sfida Setagaya FC and FC Takahishi Kibi International University, both in the second tier of Japanese women’s football, had their applications approved today.
And finally, the Sankei Shimbun provides news on the 23-member Nadeshiko squad selected by Norio Sasaki to face Brazil and the United States in the Women’s Kirin Challenge Cup. The friendly tournament sees Japan play the US on 1 April at the Yurtec Stadium in Sendai before playing Brazil on 5 April at the Home’s Stadium in Kobe, with Sasaki saying:
Brazil has a different playing style than the others and we haven’t played them at the world championship, so by playing them I hope we can learn what we can do and what we cannot do. It’ll be also nice if we can give a playing opportunity to those players who haven’t played the U.S. before.
The squad in full:
|GK||Miho Fukumoto||Okayama Yunogo Belle|
|GK||Ayumi Kaihori||INAC Kobe Leonessa|
|DF||Yukari Kinga||INAC Kobe Leonessa|
|DF||Kyoko Yano||Urawa Reds Ladies|
|DF||Chiaki Minamiyama||INAC Kobe Leonessa|
|DF||Aya Sameshima||Montpellier HSC|
|DF||Saori Ariyoshi||NTV Beleza|
|DF||Asuna Tanaka||INAC Kobe Leonessa|
|DF||Rumi Utsugi||Montpellier HSC|
|DF||Yuri Kawamura||Albirex Niigata Ladies|
|DF||Kanako Osafune||Vegalta Sendai Ladies|
|DF||Saki Kumagai||1. FFC Frankfurt|
|MF||Aya Miyama||Okayama Yunogo Belle|
|MF||Nahomi Kawasumi||INAC Kobe Leonessa|
|MF||Megumi Kamionobe||Albirex Niigata Ladies|
|MF||Manami Nakano||Okayama Yunogo Belle|
|MF||Mizuho Sakaguchi||NTV Beleza|
|MF||Yumi Uetsuji||Vegalta Sendai Ladies|
|FW||Kozue Ando||FCR 2001 Duisburg|
|FW||Shinobu Ohno||INAC Kobe Leonessa|
|FW||Yuki Nagasato||1. FFC Turbine Potsdam|
|FW||Yuika Sugasawa||Albirex Niigata Ladies|
|FW||Megumi Takase||INAC Kobe Leonessa|
For highlights of all the Nadeshiko’s goals from the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup, please click here. At 3:02 you will find the sensational 35 yard volley scored by Nahomi Kawasumi in the 3-1 victory over Sweden in the semi-final, a goal which would grace any competition.