Tomoaki Makino netted a goal against Brazil on Friday but Japan succumbed 3-1 to the South American powerhouse in an global friendly match played in the lead-up to next year’s World Cup soccer finals.
The Real Madrid left-back lashed a sensational effort from just outside the box into the top-left corner with his weaker right foot as Tite’s side made it back-to-back triumphs having finished their 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign with one win in three.
Japan came back into the game after halftime and Makino found the net in the 63rd minute, heading in Ideguchi’s corner, but that was all they could manage.
“I don’t know what was happening in their heads in the first half”, said Halilhodzic. “There are many things we can improve”.
It was the first time Brazil had been involved in a match featuring experimental video replay technology (VAR) and the five-times world champions were quickly on the right end of a decision.
He slipped Giuliano through down the right-hand side after carving open space, with captain Yuto Nagatomo forced to produce a vital sliding block. Brazil were soon leading the game as Neymar scored from the spot in the 9th minute.
Neymar calmly converted for his 53rd global goal – eight of which have come against Japan – and the 25-year-old should have added to his tally five minutes later after Jesus was barged over by Hotaru Yamaguchi. Neymar switched corners and Kawashima guessed right this time to turn the forward’s attempt around the post.
Jesus was joined in the starting XI by Manchester City team-mates Fernandinho and Danilo, and threatened as early as the sixth minute but saw his shot blocked by Southampton’s Maya Yoshida.
Yoshida almost atoned for his early blunder on the half-hour as he crashed a free-kick against the crossbar, but Japan were ruthlessly dissected as Brazil further flexed their muscles on 36 minutes.
Brazil were so convincing that at half-time their manager Tite gave goalkeeper Cassio his debut when introducing him for Alisson.