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Football: Honda powers Japan to friendly win over Guatemala

CSKA Moscow forward Keisuke Honda came off the bench to drive Japan to a 3-0 friendly win over Guatemala on Friday. Honda, who earlier this week missed out on a transfer to AC Milan, entered the game as a half-time substitute and opened the scoring five minutes later, heading home a Yuto Nagatomo cross at the far post. Fellow substitute Masato Kudo then doubled Japan's lead in the 69th minute, before Yasuhito Endo rounded off the scoring with a deflected free-kick in the 76th minute.

Football: Nagatomo looking for Milan derby with Honda

Inter Milan defender Yuto Nagatomo said Tuesday he was hungering for a cross-town derby against fellow Japan international Keisuke Honda who has been linked to a move to AC Milan. "It's my dream to confront a fellow Japanese in a Milan derby," the 26-year-old Nagatomo told reporters at Tokyo's Narita airport before flying back to the Italian city after pre-season holidays at home. "I really want to fight against him. I want to stop him squarely when the time comes."

Football: Japan factfile

Factfile on Japan, four-time Asian Cup champions who will compete in the 2013 Confederations Cup in Brazil, beginning on June 15: COUNTRY: Japan Capital: Tokyo Population: 127.3 million Surface area: 377,914 km2 Main cities: Tokyo, Yokohama, Nagoya, Osaka, Kobe, Fukuoka Honours World Cup: Round of 16 (2002, 2010) Asian Cup: Champions (1992, 2000, 2004, 2011) Olympics: 3rd (1968) Confederations Cup: 2nd (2001) Confederations Cup: Group A (with Brazil, Mexico and Italy)

Football: Japan's J-League still blazing trails at 20

Japan's J-League was a trailblazer for Asian football when it debuted in 1993 and now, as it celebrates its 20th anniversary, it is still pointing the way forwards for the region. Gone are the days when J-League clubs spent lavishly to recruit the likes of Gary Lineker, Zico and Pierre Littbarski, who lit up the early years of Japan's first professional league. With limited attendances and TV money, following the burst of Japan's economic bubble in the early 1990s, the league has stayed afloat without big names on its team sheets.

Football: Japan's J-League still blazing trails at 20

Japan's J-League was a trailblazer for Asian football when it debuted in 1993 and now, as it celebrates its 20th anniversary, it is still pointing the way forwards for the region. Gone are the days when J-League clubs spent lavishly to recruit the likes of Gary Lineker, Zico and Pierre Littbarski, who lit up the early years of Japan's first professional league. With limited attendances and TV money, following the burst of Japan's economic bubble in the early 1990s, the league has stayed afloat without big names on its team sheets.

Football: Honda to miss Japan World Cup qualifier

Injured Keisuke Honda and Yuto Nagatomo will miss Japan's forthcoming World Cup qualifier against Jordan but coach Alberto Zaccheroni said Thursday his squad have the strength in depth to replace them. "Their absence may be a blow to us but we will maintain the team's balance by having their replacements gel smoothly," the Italian said through an interpreter as he announced a 23-strong squad for the March 26 match in Amman.

Football: Injured Nagatomo facing end of season

Inter Milan defender Yuto Nagatomo's season could be over after the Serie A club confirmed the Japanese had damaged ligaments in his knee. Nagatomo limped off during the 1-1 draw with AC Milan on Sunday and underwent tests in midweek. A statement by the Serie A club issued late Wednesday said Nagatomo had been diagnosed with "a capsular ligament injury to the external meniscus and minor damage to the external ligament".

Soccer-Inter's Nagatomo suffers knee ligament damage

Feb 27 (Reuters) - Inter Milan's Japanese full back Yuto Nagatomo has suffered knee ligament damage but his recovery time has yet to be determined. "A capsular ligament injury to the external meniscus and minor damage to the external ligament. That was the outcome of tests carried out on Yuto Nagatomo," a club statement said on Wednesday.
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