Japan gets new coach for World Cup
NHK -- Apr 10
Just 2 months before the World Cup kicks off in Russia, Japan is replacing its national soccer coach. Akira Nishino is in and Vahid Halilhodzic is out.

Japan Football Association President Kohzo Tashima said, "I made the decision to change the coach because I want to do whatever I can to help the team win at the World Cup. I believe it's best the new coach is someone who has been working with Japanese players."

Nishino is currently the Technical Director of the Japan Football Association and has managed top-tier J-League teams.

Before that, he led the national team at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.

The head of the association praised Halilhodzic for helping Japan qualify for its 6th straight World Cup.

But he said the coach has been struggling to get through to the players. The team recently suffered a tie and a loss to teams that hadn't even qualified for the World Cup.

Japan will play Colombia in its opening group stage match in June.

News source: NHK
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