Japan national team manager Alberto Zaccheroni has been requesting the football Association to schedule matches against tougher opposition, as it would help them prepare well for the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2014.
The Japanese football Association has granted the wish to Zaccheroni after Japan will be taking on Uruguay in a friendly match. Uruguay will provide a stern opposition for Japan, and the friendly match will be taking place in the second week of August. The South American team reached the semifinals of the FIFA World Cup 2010, while they have also recently won the Copa America as well.
Yet, the South Americans have not been at their best in recent months. It has been partly down to the ageing squad, which includes the likes of Diego Forlan. The emergence of players like Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez is yet to take effect in the results, but Uruguay manager Oscar Tabarez recently expressed his confidence that the team will be able to return to winning ways. The nation is currently fighting against the odds to qualify for the FIFA World Cup 2014, while Japan are extremely close to sealing their place in this major tournament.
Zaccheroni has said that this match will help his team know their status against the big boys.
“Uruguay are among the top teams in the world, with individual quality and sophisticated tactics. I pleaded with the JFA to fix this match because we need it to further develop the team by playing the strongest sides,” said Zaccheroni after the announcement of the friendly match came. Japan could have been the first team to qualify for the 2014 World Cup, but they missed the opportunity after the 2-1 defeat against Jordan recently. They would have qualified for this major tournament at the beaten Jordan, but still they are extremely close.