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Yoshida plays in Japan win
3:29pm Thursday 6th September 2012 in Saints News
Maya Yoshida played the full 90 minutes as Japan defeat United Arab Emirates 1-0 in a friendly in Niigata.
The new Saints signing was at the heart of the Japanese defence as they warmed up for their home World Cup qualifier against Iraq next Tuesday with a win.
However, the £2m man and his colleagues were made to work hard for the result, which was sealed thanks to a close range header from Mike Havenaar on 69 minutes.
Japan coach Alberto Zaccheroni said: “The result was important but equally important was to measure where we are before the Iraq game.
“There was positives and negatives to take from tonight but we can go away and analyse the performance now. It was important to check the condition of the team and individual players.”
Manchester United’s Shinji Kagawa, who started against Saints last weekend before being taken off in the second half, was hauled off at half time.