Japan at the 2022 World Cup: Schedule, kick-off times, stadiums and where to watch
Japan have been a staple of the World Cup since their debut in 1998, appearing in six consecutive tournaments.
Qatar 2022 will be their seventh, and the Japanese are looking to make a splash. Known as Samurai Blue, Japan have become a powerhouse in Asian football over the past 30 years, claiming four AFC Asian Cup titles in that time.
However, their continental dominance did not translate into success on the world stage, as Japan never made it past the round of 16. In fact, the Japanese have perpetuated an odd pattern at World Cups since their first appearance, alternating between group stage and round of 16 exits.
Head coach Hajime Moriyasu is tasked with breaking that pattern and taking the Japanese to new heights, and he has a packed list of players tested in Europe at his disposal. Most Japanese players based in Europe ply their trade in the Bundesliga, although there is a sprinkling of representation from the Premier League, La Liga, Ligue 1, Belgian Pro League and Scottish Premiership among the ‘crew.
Probably Moriyasu’s best-known men are Takumi Minamino and Maya Yoshida, who will have to bring their experience to a tough group and help the Japanese achieve their elusive goal.
Here are the fixtures that will define the route of the World Cup in Japan, along with kick-off times and how to watch.
Japan 2022 World Cup schedule, kick-off times
Japan were drawn into Group E alongside Costa Rica, Germany and Spain.
|November 23||10:00 p.m.||Germany versus Japan||Khalifa International Stadium|
|November 27||7:00 p.m.||Costa Rica||Ahmad bin Ali Stadium|
|December 2||4:00 a.m.||Japan vs Spain||Khalifa International Stadium|
Japan’s squad for the 2022 World Cup
- Eiji Kawashima
- Shuichi Gonda
- Daniel Schmitt
- Miki Yamane
- Shogo Taniguchi
- Ko Itakura
- Yuto Nagatomo
- Takehiro Tomiyasu
- Hiroki Sakai
- Maya Yoshida
- Hiroki Itō
- Wataru Endo
- Gaku Shibasaki
- Ritsu Doan
- Kaoru Mitoma
- Takumi Minamino
- Takefusa Kubo
- Hidemasa Morita
- Junya Itō
- Daichi Kamada
- Ao Tanaka
- Yūki Soma
- Takuma Asano
- Shuto Machino
- Ayase Ueda
- Daizen Maeda
In which stadiums will Japan play at the 2022 World Cup?
Japan will play at two different venues during the group stage.
Khalifa International Stadium – Germany vs Japan & Japan vs Spain
Japan’s first and final group stage matches will be played at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, a 45,416-seater venue that is by far the oldest at Qatar 2022.
Opened in 1976, it is a multi-purpose venue that has hosted athletics events as well as football events. The stadium has undergone numerous renovations, including major redevelopments in 2005 and 2017, to increase capacity and amenities.
Major events that have been staged at the venue include the 2006 Asian Games, 2011 Pan Arab Games, 2019 World Championships in Athletics and a pair of 2019 FIFA Club World Cup matches. will host eight World Cup matches, including the third place match.
Ahmad bin Ali Stadium – Japan vs. Costa Rica
Officially named Ahmad bin Ali Stadium, Al-Rayyan Stadium is so nicknamed because of the city in which it is located.
The 50,000-seater venue is actually the second stadium to be built at the same location, its predecessor holding less than half the capacity and standing from 2003 to 2015.
Home to Al-Rayyan SC and Al Kharaitiyat SC of the Qatar Stars League, the stadium opened in 2020 and has since hosted matches at the 2020 FIFA Club World Cup and 2021 FIFA Arab Cup. More recently, the stadium hosted both intercontinental matches. – exhibition games that determined the last two countries (Australia and Costa Rica) to qualify for Qatar 2022.
Al-Rayyan Stadium will host seven Qatar 2022 matches.
2022 World Cup matches in Japan: how to watch
All Japan matches will be broadcast on DENSU LIVE in that country.