YOKOHAMA - Japan midfielder Keisuke
Honda has predicted a convincing victory against Czech Republic
in Tuesday's friendly at Yokohama after being frustrated by Peru
"We want to thrash them," Honda told Monday's Japanese media
after a dour goalless draw against the South Americans in their
Kirin Cup opener in Niigata.
"It's an important game and it's important so push ourselves
to the limit."
Japan lacked any sort of cohesion with a new-look 3-4-3
formation being tested by coach Alberto Zaccheroni but Honda
said the players backed the Italian's tactics.
"It's something new and you have to be patient," said the
Moscow-based player, who shot to prominence by helping Japan
reach the last 16 of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
"We were all over the place at times (against Peru) but you
have to look at things when they go wrong but stay positive."
Zaccheroni said he would continue to experiment with the
"We have to keep plugging away and making sure all the
players know their job," he said before winner-takes-all game
against the Czechs, who also drew 0-0 with Peru.
Japan, who pulled out of July's Copa America after the
deadly earthquake and tsunami in March, have one more match
before the 2014 World Cup qualifiers begin.
Zaccheroni will hope to have Borussia Dortmund's Shinji
Kagawa, being linked to English champions Manchester United,
back for that game against South Korea in August.
Japan captain Makoto Hasebe said the 'Blue Samurai' had
strength in depth and denied there was a rift in the team camp
over Zaccheroni's man-management methods.
"Of course we expect to win," he said. "We know they are not
an easy team to beat but we're improving.
"We have to adapt our tactics according to the teams we
play but to take our game to the next level we have to learn to
think for ourselves."
Japan beat the Czechs 1-0 in Prague the last time they met.
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