Photo credit: Kyodo News
Last July, the national football team of Japan came close to getting into the top eight at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. The Samurai Blue were led by head coach Akira Nishino, graduate of the School of Education at Waseda University, and former active member of the Waseda Association Football Club. Before the World Cup started, many predicted that Japan would be eliminated in the group stages. Proving doubters wrong, the Japanese football team made it to the knockout stages.
Waseda University Association Football Club hosted a send-off party for Nishino last May to cheer on him after it was announced that he was appointed to be the head coach for Samurai Blue in the recent World Cup. The head coach gave a heartwarming opening address and shared his determination and goals for the tournament.
Read more about the role of Waseda University in the history of Japanese football here!