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kushiro last won the day on 15 December 2017

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About kushiro

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  1. kushiro

    Colombia vs Japan match thread

    You're coming to Japan? Pop in and see us, mate! If I've calmed down by then. Unbelievably emotional game. Don't think I've been as angry at a ref since - when? Jonathon Moss 2016 maybe. Japan were incredibly impressive - apart from the missed chances. They haven't played that well in a competitive match since the Denmark game in 2010. Osako was so good up front - Shinji can't really expect to come in if Osako's playing that well.
  2. Shinji's been sounding very positive in the final hours before kick-off. Saying he's raring to go, basically. I've been looking back at Shinji's first world cup - eight years ago. Here's a few pics from that amazing 3-1 win over Denmark. Shinji came on as sub and put the seal on the victory with goal number 3, set up beautifully by Keisuke Honda. Here he is thanking Honda for the assist - so boyish! And here's another future Fox celebrating the victory: Remember those two free-kicks that set up the victory? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k1YK0e-UWNg&t=0m45s
  3. kushiro

    LCFC players featuring at the 2018 World Cup

    After all the speculation,Shinji will STAY with the Japan squad. The news has just come out - as the '24 hours before the first game kicks off' deadline passed - that no replacement will be called for. Shinji hasn't trained properly for a few days, but boss Nishino has clearly decided that he still has a chance of contributing. From all the statements he's made since he took over, it's obvious that Nishino is a massive Shinji fan - so let's hope we see him at some stage - if not tomorrow against Colombia then hopefully against Senegal or Poland.
  4. kushiro

    Kasper Schmeichel

  5. kushiro

    LCFC players featuring at the 2018 World Cup

    Bad news. Shinji's picked up a calf strain that looks like ruling him out of the Colombia game at least. The extent of the injury's a bit unclear - there's even talk of Japan calling up a replacement, which they're allowed to do until 24 hours before the first game kicks off. Nishino used the word 'kibishii' - which you could translate as 'It looks bad'.
  6. kushiro

    Russia 2018 - The World Cup thread

    Saudi Arabia's odds to win the World Cup are making me smile:
  7. The clouds have lifted somewhat after the 4-2 win against Paraguay. Shinji started the game and he came off with 15 minutes to go when Japan were 2-1 up. He played in the lone striker role, and while he didn't score, or have any clear chances, his contribution to the victory is being acknowledged this morning. This game was clearly seen as a rehearsal for their first Group H match against Colombia next week. Nishino's strategy was to stop the opposition playing, and who better to play that role than Shinji? As one commentator writes, 'Okazaki's pressing sent a message to the team. When the opposition defenders had the ball, Shinji was quick to close down. Kagawa followed his lead, and then the midfield all pushed forward. Okazaki's job of closing down passing lanes is not a glamorous one, but it was key to the victory'. The question now is whether Nishino will stick with Shinji against Colombia. Some think he will revert to Osako, but Nishino must be very tempted to keep the same shape up front. Osako's goals have dried up recently and pressing isn't one of his strengths. Shinji must have a pretty good chance of winning cap number 114, and who knows - maybe even scoring goal number 51. After all, his last goal in the World Cup was against the same opponents four years ago. Here he is in action against Paraguay: In this picture you can see Shinji in the foreground and Inui about to unleash a very Mahrez-like 25-yard curler for Japan's first goal: And here he is saluting Kagawa's goal that made it 4-2 in stoppage time:
  8. Shinji looks set to start today's final World Cup warm up match against Paraguay - kick off just after 2pm UK time. This is a big chance for him because Japan's preparations so far have been truly dreadful. The switch of manager has had no effect, and if anything they've looked even more lifeless since Nishino took over, losing to Ghana and Switzerland. All the media reckon Okazaki will be given the lone striker's role today - what used to be his favourite position, though recently he's been saying that he'd actually prefer his Leicester role. He had twenty minutes in the Ghana game and looked pretty sharp, but didn't get off the bench in the Switzerland game four days ago. A couple of pictures from a recent training session:
  9. I've only ever had two. Both away shirts. The white 96/97 shirt, bought for a tenner in a sale at the souvenir shop, and the 2000/01 yellow one that I got for nothing when someone threw it on the pitch in disgust after we lost to Wycombe in the FA Cup quarter-final. I was in the front row of the kop and nipped over the hoardings to grab it.
  10. kushiro

    LCFC players featuring at the 2018 World Cup

    Shinji is in! Final squad of 23 just announced.
  11. The Japanese keeper is wearing this kit: Shinji has come on as sub with 25 to go and he's looking quite sharp. Ghana are 2-0 up though.
  12. At this very moment, Shinji is warming up for the Japan Ghana game wearing this training kit: It's pissing it down with rain 20 minutes before kick off and Shinji is laughing his head off. He's on the bench and will no doubt get a chance to prove his fitness at some point.
  13. Sports papers here this morning are full of the change of direction under the new boss, with the 'Big Three' (Okazaki, Honda and Kagawa) all called up together to the Japanese squad for the first time in a long time. One of the papers likens it to a change of government - and there is certainly a sense of ripping up a predecessor's legacy - for Trump-Obama read Nishino-Halilhodzic. Another paper rates each player's chance of making the final cut - and puts Okazaki at 80% and Honda and Kagawa at 70%. It's largely guesswork of course but it's nice to see such confidence being expressed in Shinji, who himself was making very positive noises about his fitness and how confident he is he can do something in Russia when he arrived back in Japan on Tuesday. When he was asked about the Big Three at his press conference yesterday Nishino deliberately singled out Okazaki, and had to be pressed again to give his thoughts on Honda and Kagawa - the reverse of the situation at Halilhodzic's last press conference (see above) when journalists had to push him hard to explain exactly why Shinji wasn't in the squad.
  14. Fantastic news for Shinji - after eight months out he's back in the Japan squad. After the sacking of Halilhodzic last month, new boss Nishino has restored him to the squad of 27 for the World Cup warm up game against Ghana in 12 days time. Nishino acknowledges that there is a question mark over his fitness, but thinks that with one month to go Shinji has a chance to make it. Presumably he'll get some kind of run out in the Ghana game before the final 23 is announced on May 31st. Nishino was keen to praise Okazaki in his interview after the squad announcement, calling his selfless play and contribution to the team 'irreplaceable'. Let's hope he really can get back to full fitness and the kind of form he was in the the first half of the season, rather than the clearly half-fit Shinji we saw in March. In other news, Shinji has another book out, the third volume of his own writing (you may remember the second one - a diary of the 2015/16 season). This one is called 'The Worried Man' - it's a collection of refelctive interviews over the last two years about all aspects of the game.
  15. This might help. https://www.reddit.com/r/footballhighlights/comments/7wdn1h/201516_leicester_city_matches_in_720p_hd_with/ These links were all working recently though there's no telling for how long. You might have to try a couple of different browsers to avoid annoying demands for downloads before the file opens properly. Happy viewing.