• Date: Sun 30 May 2010
  • Venue: UPC-Arena, Graz
  • Ref: Eisner, R
  • Attendance: 15,326
Japan

Japan

Tulio (7)

1 - 2

Japan vs England

Team Lineups

Japan

Eiji Kawashima
Yasuyuki Konno
Yuji Nakazawa
Marcus Tanaka Tulio
Yuto Nagatomo
Makoto Hasebe
Yuki Abe
Yasuhito Endo (Keiji Tamada, 86)
Keisuke Honda
Shinji Okazaki (Takayuki Morimoto, 65)
Yoshito Okubo (Daisuke Matsui, 72)

England

David James (Joe Hart, 46)
Glen Johnson, G (Jamie Carragher, 46)
Ashley Cole, A
John Terry
Rio Ferdinand
Tom Huddlestone (Steven Gerrard, 46)
Aaron Lennon (Emile Heskey, 76)
Frank Lampard
Darren Bent (Joe Cole, J, 46)
Wayne Rooney
Theo Walcott (Shaun Wright-Phillips, 46)

Match Report
England will head to South Africa in winning form, but a fortuitous 2-1 friendly victory over Japan in Austria has left Fabio Capello with plenty to ponder. England had to come from behind and were indebted to two late own goals from an unlucky Japanese side to save their blushes. Capello had decided to run the rule over a number of fringe members of his squad ahead of his unveiling of the final 23-man travelling party on June 1. However, it produced a disjointed and dismal first-half performance in which England failed to hit the mediocre heights they did in another fortunate 3-1 victory over Mexico on Monday. Darren Bent, Tom Huddlestone and Theo Walcott were all handed starts, but the trio were hauled off at half-time and may now find themselves missing the plane to South Africa. Japan took the lead in the seventh minute when defender Tulio Tanaka stole a march on Glen Johnson and met a well-worked corner routine with a low volley which found the back of the net through Ashley Cole's legs. England had their chances despite being off-colour with Aaron Lennon wasting the best after firing straight at the keeper when put through by a clever Wayne Rooney pass. Bent then anticipated well but guided a header from Rio Ferdinand's long ball over the top wide with the keeper caught on his heels. Capello was clearly alarmed with what he saw in the first half and rang the changes at the interval. Joe Hart, Jamie Carragher, Joe Cole, Steven Gerrard and Shaun Wright-Phillips all came on and the Italian even altered his formation to an unusual 3-5-2 to much surprise. England immediately looked more dangerous and should have been back on level terms when they were awarded a penalty for handball after 56 minutes. However, Frank Lampard, fresh from missing a spot-kick for Chelsea in the FA Cup final, again missed from 12 yards as Eiji Kawashima dived low to his right to turn away his penalty. Either side of the penalty miss, Hart again added to his growing reputation with two top-quality saves to keep out a Japan side that was happy to play on the break. His opposite number, Kawashima, then did superbly to claw Rooney's effort, that was bound for the top corner, over the crossbar. But with time beginning to run out on England, they were gifted two quick-fire lifelines virtually out of the blue. First Tanaka headed a harmless looking Joe Cole cross into his net at the near post on 72 minutes. Then, 11 minutes later, Yuji Nakazawa stuck out a leg and deflected Ashley Cole's early cross from the opposite flank past his helpless keeper. There was still time for substitute Emile Heskey to miss a sitter from three yards when he failed to meet Gerrard's superb cross. But after getting out of jail, Capello has certainly been given a strong indication of whom he should and should not select for his final squad of 23 players.
Live Text Commentary
Full time
 

FULL-TIME: JAPAN 1-2 ENGLAND

90

Next stop South Africa for the Three Lions as time ticks away on an unconvincing but winning warm-up performance

90

Yuki Abe diverts a mis-hit corner on to the angle of post and bar but that would have been a lucky goal as nobody knew what was going on in the torrential conditions

89

Gerrard puts a goal on a plate for Heskey but he conspires to miss with a diving header from just three yards. That had 3-1 written all over it!

89

Honda lashes a hopeful long-range free-kick high over the crossbar as the rain begins to fall really heavily in Graz

88

Fabio Capello has been given plenty of food for thought after a dismal first-half display which has been followed by an improved second 45 minutes. It's hardly vintage stuff from England though with no more matches to play before the World Cup

86
Substitution
 

Keiji Tamada comes on for Yasuhito Endo as Japan make a late change

85

England are looking for a third now after getting out of jail thanks to two own goals

83
Goal
 

JAPAN 1-2 ENGLAND: Japan can't believe it as YUJI NAKAZAWA sticks out a leg and deflects Ashley Cole's hopeful early cross into the back of his own net. That's cruel luck!

82

Rooney and Gerrard almost combine through a sea of blue shirts to open up the defence but the keeper just about claims the ball and sweeps up the danger

81

Gerrard's free-kick is just too high for Rooney as England press for a second

80

Lampard sprays a simple pass out of play and he really hasn't covered himself in glory this afternoon

78

England are well on top now but this has been a nervy, mistake-ridden performance

76
Substitution
 

Emile Heskey is sent on for Lennon as Capello reverts to a 4-4-2

72
Goal
 

JAPAN 1-1 ENGLAND: Joe Cole's cross is headed into his own net by TANAKA at the near post as England are let off the hook. That was a sensational diving header but unfortunately at the wrong end for Japan

72
Substitution
 

Daisuke Matsui comes on for Yoshito Okubo in a second Japanese change

69

Kawashima does superbly to claw Rooney's effort bound for the top corner over the crossbar. That was a sensational effort and probably deserved to be the equalising goal

67

Hart does well to palm away an effort from the substitute after a long diagonal ball opened up the three-man England defence too easily

66

Terry is nursing a sore knee following an uneasy landing but should be okay to continue

65
Substitution
 

Japan send on Daiki Iwamasa for Okazaki in a first change

63

Rooney tests the keeper with a low shot to his right from 25 yards which he holds cleanly

62

Cole feeds Lennon who chips over a cross looking for Rooney which is scrambled clear. That was a much better and quicker attacking move though and showed promise

60

Rooney is flagged offside as he latches on to a Gerrard through ball. That looked a dodgy call and Rooney's look says it all

59

Fabio Capello and his Japanese counterpart are getting a little hot under the collar too and this match is bubbling up nicely

58

Rooney is fortunate not to see yellow for a crude lunge at Tanaka. He would definitely have been booked in a competitive match for that

57

Lampard holds his head and his low penalty looking for the bottom corner is saved well by the keeper. He missed in the FA Cup final two weeks ago too!

56

Penalty to England. Lampard's free-kick is stopped by the wall but there was at least two handballs in there!

55

Wright-Phillips wins two 50/50 challenges as he gallops down the right and he looks like he has a point to prove too

54

England are looking a lot more dangerous following the change in personnel and they are really starting to knock at the door

52

Keisuke Honda worries Hart with a powerful shot which he tips over the bar. That was a good save and the referee points for a goal-kick!

50

Joe Cole has looked bright and the Chelsea man obviously feels that he has a point to prove

48

Gerrard tests the keeper with a low shot from 20 yards which was a work-out but nothing more

47

Capello has also altered his formation to an intriguing 3-5-2

46
Substitution
 

Capello has made a raft of half-time changes with Joe Hart, Jamie Carragher, Jole Cole, Steven Gerrard and Shaun Wright-Phillips on for James, Johnson, Huddlestone, Bent and Walcott

46
Kickoff
 

England kick-off the second half and they have plenty to prove after a poor first 45 minutes

Half time
 

HALF-TIME: JAPAN 1-0 ENGLAND

45

The England fans packed inside this cosy stadium look downbeat and it's easy to see why with their team playing like this

44

Walcott takes on his man but his low cross is too close to the keeper who gathers with Bent lurking

43

Cole cuts inside and drives into the box but his right-foot shot is easy for the keeper who holds first time

41

Lampard stretches but fails to meet Johnson's ball over the top to the back post. Again that was better from England as they finish a poor half with a flourish

39

Rooney improvises and almost diverts an off-target Huddlestone shot on target as England get closer to a breakthrough

37

Rooney and Walcott combine with the latter's first-time cross causing the first real moment of danger in the Japan defence

35

Even Rooney is giving the ball away and this has hardly been a vintage half from England. Fabio Capello has work to do at half-time - much like against Mexico at Wembley

33

Ferdinand hacks clear a dangerous cross as the midfield goes awol and allows Japan to break quickly and easily

31

Bent heads just wide as he anticipates Ferdinand's long ball over the top and beats the keeper to the ball. That was better from the Sunderland man who has been peripheral so far

29

Johnson's next act is to change his footwear so perhaps the boots were to blame for that skied effort?!

27

Lennon goes on a mazy run which, via Walcott, ends with Johnson lashing a poor shot well off target. That's better from England though

25

Bent meets a corner with a mis-timed header and the ball loops away harmlessly. He should have hit the target there and isn't covering himself in glory

24

The keeper spills Lampard's 30-yard free-kick straight in front of him but no red shirt reacts in time and Japan hack the danger clear

22

Cole gives the ball away cheaply and sloppy is the best way to describe England's performance so far

20

Ferdinand makes a hash of a pass back and is lucky that Okazaki lashes a hasty shot over the bar. The England skipper turned around asking for a free-kick but he was just too laid back

19

Rooney slips in Aaron Lennon with a cute pass but he fires straight at the keeper with a disappointing left-foot shot. That really should have been 1-1 and Lennon knows it

17

Huddlestone catches Okazaki in midfield and is lucky not to conceded a free-kick and a certain yellow card in a competitive game

15

Frank Lampard and Huddlestone just can't get a grip on the centre of midfield and Fabio Capello looks less than impressed sat in the dugout

13

Walcott loses control of the ball cheaply and he is really not impressing in this make-or-break game

11

England are back in control of the ball but they are yet to create anything in the opposition half

9

Shinji Okazaki creates a yard of space but curls an ambitious shot over the crossbar. England don't look the most secure at the back at the moment

7
Goal
 

JAPAN 1-0 ENGLAND: TANAKA steals a march on Johnson and powers a low corner into the back of the net. That's Japan's first foray into the England box and it wasn't great defending!

6

Glen Johnson comes across and heads a dangerous long ball away from the lurking striker as Japan briefly threaten for the first time

5

England are dominating possession in these early moments but no real chances so far

3

Wayne Rooney is looking lively and that might just bode well for Bent's chances of being on the plane to South Africa

2

Already this pitch looks much better than the Wembley surface and the England players might just relish that

1
Kickoff
 

Japan get this game underway in an intimate stadium in Graz

That could signal the end of Scott Parker and Michael Dawson, who have not featured in either game

Darren Bent, Tom Huddlestone, Aaron Lennon and Theo Walcott all start, while Ashley Cole, John Terry, Frank Lampard and David James have all been recalled from the side that beat Mexico 3-1 six days ago

Fabio Capello is taking the opportunity to run the rule over a number of fringe members of his squad with decision day looming on his final 23

England complete their two-match World Cup warm-up with a friendly against Japan this afternoon (kick-off 1.15pm)