Japan coach Naoki Kusunose
This is a very good result for us and I’m happy with the win. The players have given their all in these important matches. We were a bit tense before the start of the match, but we got over that once we scored the opening goal. That gave us a lot of confidence, but we still had to wait until the end of the half to score our second goal. In the second half, we asked the players to show us some better and quicker movement. Things got a bit easier after that: we created a lot of chances for ourselves and we could really have scored a few more times. I’m satisfied with the performance and the result, though. I would call the way we play “Japanese style”, because we all work together as a unit. Our next game against Spain is likely to be a great match, and we’ll be ready to continue defending our title.
England coach John Griffiths
I’d like to congratulate the Japanese. They played really well, and it was a pleasure to take on a team like that. The goal that we conceded so early on was a tough one to take, and the one before the break put us in big trouble. Japan are the reigning champions and they have a lot of experience. In the run-up to this tournament, we played 16 matches and lost only two, to Germany, the European champions, and to Japan, the world champions. We’re heading home having learned some valuable lessons. Gaining experience is just the first step for this generation of players. I’m proud of them, because they went about their business in a very mature manner. I’m convinced they’re going to make great progress in the future.