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Japan

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Japan win in Vahid Halilhodzic's debut; South Korea held to draw

Japan notched a 2-0 win over Tunisia in new head coach Vahid Halihodzic's first match in charge.

Shinji Okazaki and Keisuke Honda scored second-half goals as Japan beat Tunisia 2-0 on Friday in their first game under new coach Vahid Halilhodzic.

Halilhodzic brought Honda and Okazaki into the game early in the second half, and the moves paid off.

Okazaki scored on a header off a Honda cross in the 78th minute, and Honda doubled the advantage five minutes later when he picked up a loose ball and fired past goalkeeper Moez Ben Cherifia from close range.

Halilhodzic, who guided Algeria to the last...

Japan's Vahid Halilhodzic includes Keisuke Honda, Shinji Kagawa in squad

Former Ivory Coast and Algeria boss Vahid Halihodzic is confirmed as the new Japan national head coach by the Japanese Football Association.

Japan coach Vahid Halilhodzic opted for experience in naming his first squad since taking over as coach of the national football team.

Halilhodzic, who was just appointed to the job a week ago, selected Milan forward Keisuke Honda and Borussia Dortmund midfielder Shinji Kagawa to the 31-man squad that will play home friendlies against Tunisia on March 27 and Uzbekistan four days later.

"I want there to be a lot of competition on this team," Halilhodzic said.

The 62-year-old Bosnian took over from...

Japan coach Vahid Halilhodzic sets team qualifying goals

Former Ivory Coast and Algeria boss Vahid Halihodzic is confirmed as the new Japan national head coach by the Japanese Football Association.

TOKYO -- Japan coach Vahid Halilhodzic has laid out his plans to help the country's national football team move up in the FIFA rankings.

Halilhodzic, who took over from Javier Aguirre after the Mexican was fired last month amid a match-fixing scandal, spoke on Friday, a day after the Japanese Football Association approved his appointment at a meeting of its executive board.

"I was able to get Algeria to No. 17 in the rankings and I want to do the same for Japan," Halilhodzic said. "It won't come...