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Japan eager to show 'strength' at Copa America

BeSoccer by BeSoccer @besoccer_com - 0 1,516

Pin Japan eager to show 'strength' at Copa America.
Japan eager to show 'strength' at Copa America.

Japan eager to show 'strength' at Copa America

BeSoccer by BeSoccer @besoccer_com - 0 1,516

Japan plan on displaying their "strength" at the Copa America when the Blue Samurai make their second appearance as guests in a tough Group C alongside champions Chile, coach Hajime Moriyasu said on Thursday.

"I'm really looking forward to playing in the Copa America, it's one of the highest level tournaments in the world," the coach told reporters in Sao Paulo.

"How can we show our strength and which way we play, that's what we want to find out in this tournament," the coach of the Asian Cup runners-up added.

Japan may not be amongst the favorites but Moriyasu insisted his players have arrived in Brazil with a winning mindset.

"We will play in order to win the title, but first and foremost for us is to play game by game and do our best in each, then think of the next one," the 50-year-old coach underlined.

Previously, Moriyasu had announced that the Copa America would serve as a warm-up for the Olympic Games to be held in Tokyo next year.

The Japanese arrived in Brazil on Wednesday and will play their opening match against Chile in Sao Paulo on Monday.

They held their first training session on Thursday at Brazilian giants Sao Paulo's headquarters, where around 400 children and adults of Japanese origin watched the hour-long practice.

Their first match will likely feel like a home game given the huge Japanese migrant community in the sprawling metropolis.

There is an estimated 1.5 million people of Japanese descent in Brazil, many of whom live in Sao Paulo.

They begin their Group C challenge at the Morumbi stadium against the two-time reigning champions, who can boast the likes of Barcelona's Arturo Vidal and Alexis Sanchez of Manchester United.

"Chile is one of the strongest teams in the world," Moriyasu warned.

Japan's sole previous participation as invitees dates back to Paraguay in 1999, when they finished winless and were eliminated in the first round following defeats to Peru (3-2) and the hosts (4-0), although they did draw 1-1 with Bolivia.

On this occasion, they are slotted into Group C alongside Chile, record 15-time winners Uruguay and Ecuador.

Japan had a low-key preparation for the tournament, beating El Salvador 2-0 and drawing 0-0 with Trinidad and Tobago.

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