Is this World Cup a poisoned chalice for Japan?

Against all odds (and my own pessimistic predictions), Japan are in the Round of 16 where they will face Belgium. One would think that the national mood would be jubilant as a nation of 120 million people unite to support the Samurai Blue. Yet, that is not the case. While many fans have found reason…

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Halilhodzic’s rocky Japan journey ends in shock dismissal

Two months before the World Cup, there are countless things that participating football associations should be busy with. There’s ensuring that base camps are properly outfitted; triple-checking passport expiration dates and visa applications; arranging last-minute sponsorship campaigns and public viewing events. Maybe even getting in a Russian lesson here and there. Nowhere in that list…

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