Nigeria v Japan October friendly: Japan’s coach wary of Super Falcons’ three main strong points

The two continental giants will square up against each other in Kobe next week in preparation for next year’s Mundial

Japan Women’s National Team coach Ikeda Futoshi has voiced his admiration for the Super Falcons ahead of the international friendly match between Nigeria and the Asian giants.

The Super Falcons have not been impressive recently, suffering two losses to the United States in September.

Those defeats came after the Nigerian ladies finished a disappointing fourth at the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations hosted by Morocco in July.

Despite the Super Falcons’ failure to pick up positive results from their last four matches, Nadeshiko Japan’s coach Futoshi is aware that the nine-time African champions can be a tough customer on their day.

Futoshi identifies the Super Falcons’ three strong points to include the team’s speed, strength, and solid defence.

And the 51-year-old tactician believes caging these Nigerian features will be crucial to Japan’s victory.

“They showed great speed and strength even at the U-20 level,” Futoshi told the Japan FA official website.

“We must be careful of their unique speed and tempo and try to pass the ball around their strong defence to create chances.

“We want to play to our strengths while taking into account the strengths of our opponents.”

Nigeria’s Super Falcons will play against Japan at the NOEVIR Stadium Kobe on October 6.

Both teams have qualified for next July’s FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia/ New Zealand 2023.

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