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Japan

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 By John Duerden

Man United, Dortmund and Japan all responsible in the decline of Kagawa

Penalty heartbreak for Japan after the United Arab Emirates' Ismail Ahmed sealed one of the biggest shocks in the tournament's history.

As he sank to his knees on the Sydney turf following his missed penalty for Japan against the United Arab Emirates in the quarterfinal of the 2015 Asian Cup, Shinji Kagawa's face wore a look of confusion and anguish. Japan had dominated but had been eliminated.

For the player, it goes a little deeper than that. The Samurai Blue had won the tournament four years ago but Kagawa left at the semifinal stage thanks to a broken metatarsal. This time, he played until the bitter end but exited even earlier.

Yet...

Javier Aguirre to continue as Japan manager despite Asian Cup exit

Japan head coach Javier Aguirre insists he is proud of his team's performance despite seeing their AFC Asian Cup defence come to an end at the hands of the United Arab Emirates.

The head of the Japan Football Association says JavierAguirre will continue as coach of the national team despite elimination from the Asian Cup at the quarterfinal stage and ongoing investigations into his alleged involvement in match-fixing.

Four-time champions Japan were eliminated by the United Arab Emirates from the Asian Cup on Friday, losing in a penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw.

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In the buildup to the tournament, Aguirre -- a former coach in La Liga -- become embroiled in a match-fixing...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Japan coach Aguirre: Poor finishing caused Asian Cup QF defeat to UAE

Japan head coach Javier Aguirre insists he is proud of his team's performance despite seeing their AFC Asian Cup defence come to an end at the hands of the United Arab Emirates.

Japan coach Javier Aguirre said his team were knocked out of the Asian Cup by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in Friday's quarterfinal in Sydney because they did not score more than one goal in regular time despite dominating possession.

Japan's European club superstars -- Borussia Dortmund midfielder Shinji Kagawa and AC Milan winger Keisuke Honda -- missed in the shootout as the UAE won 5-4 on penalties after the game ended 1-1 following 90 minutes of regular time and 30 minutes of extra time.

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"Football...

UAE's Asian Cup quarterfinal upset of Japan one for the ages

Penalty heartbreak for Japan after the United Arab Emirates' Ismail Ahmed sealed one of the biggest shocks in the tournament's history.

You never want to see the defending champions exit a tournament quietly, and for Japan, the side that has won four of the last six Asian Cups, this was a departure fitting their stature.

Were it not for the incredible Iran/Iraq quarterfinal that finished just seconds before this game, this remarkable clash in Sydney would have easily ranked as the tournament's most dramatic match.

How Japan, almost unbackable favourites, contrived to not win this encounter is the stuff of legend.

How Japan contrived to not win their Asian Cup quarterfinal against the UAE in Canberra is the stuff of legend.

Mustering just...

By ESPN Staff
Jan 23, 2015

Aguirre: We were the better team

Japan head coach Javier Aguirre insists he is proud of his team's performance despite seeing their AFC Asian Cup defence come to an end at the hands of the United Arab Emirates.

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