Saturday, November 13, 2010

India run into Japan in Asian Games football

Gelora Bung Karno (Jakarta, Indonesia) Indones...Image via Wikipedia
GUANGZHOU: After qualifying for the knock-out round for the first time after 1982, India run into formidable Japan in the round of 16 match of the Asian Games on November 16. 

After the end of group matches today, India became the best third-placed team with three points and a goal difference of zero (five against five) in Group D. 

Malaysia (Group A), Vietnam (Group B) and Uzbekistan (Group E) also made it to the round of 16 as other third-placed teams. 

The top two teams from each of four groups and the four best third-placed teams will qualify for the Round of 16. 

Asian powerhouse Japan, who topped Group A this time, had susprisingly not won Asian Games title not even once. Their runners-up finish to Iran in 2002 Busan edition was their best so far in the competition while they had also bagged the bronze on two occasions - in 1951 ( New Delhi) and 1966. 

India, on the other hand, had won the title twice - in 1951 at home and in 1962 in Jakarta - and a bronze in 1970 in Bangkok. Since then they have reached the knock-out stage only once - in 1982 at home again - before this edition. 

India and Japan have met five times against each other in the Asian Games so far. India had won twice - in 1954 (3-2) and in 1962 (2-0) - when the country was an Asian powerhouse. 

Japan won in 1966 (2-1), in 1970 (1-0) and in 1998 (1-0).

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