Japanese soccer’s most promising striker will not participate in the Asian Games

Naoki Kumata (19, FC Tokyo)온라인바카라 was left out of the Japanese men’s soccer team at the 19th Hangzhou Asian Games in China.

The Japan Football Association said, “Kumata will not participate in the Hangzhou Asian Games due to an injury for which the detailed reason cannot be disclosed. “We have designated Kotaro Uchino (19, University of Tsukuba) as a replacement player,” he said.

Kumata is the top scorer in the 2023 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-20 Championship. He scored a total of 5 goals against ▲ China, ▲ Kyrgyzstan, ▲ Jordan, and ▲ Iraq.

At the Spanish training camp in November 2022, he attracted attention by scoring in friendly matches against the Slovakian and French under-20 national teams. Kumata tried to resolve the disappointment of missing a goal in the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup finals at the Hangzhou Asian Games, but failed to achieve his goal.

Japan will send a national under-22 team to the men’s soccer event at the Hangzhou Asian Games. Like the 2018 Indonesian Jakarta-Palembang competition, where they won a silver medal, the team is made up of J-League substitutes and amateurs.

The Japanese runner-up members at the time were 5 years later: ▲ Kaoru Mitoma (26, Brighton) ▲ Go Itakura (26, Mönchengladbach) ▲ Ayase Ueda (25, Feyenoord) ▲ Koji Miyoshi (26, Birmingham) ▲ Leo Hatate ( 26, Celtic) ▲Daizen Maeda (26, Celtic) ▲Geita Endo (26, Braunschweig), etc. have grown by producing 7 European players.

There are only three players in the top 5 players in the UEFA league rankings: Mitoma, Itakura, and Ueda. The English Championship (second division), which Miyoshi belongs to, is one of the six largest stages in the world based on market size.

It is safe to cautiously judge that the potential of the Japanese national team at the Hangzhou Asian Games can compete with Korea for the championship. The exclusion of Kumata, who has experience playing on the international stage, is positive for defending champion Korea, which is challenging for its third consecutive gold medal.

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