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Sunday, Aug 18, 2019

FIFA U-17 World Cup: Japan bring green card idea for cleaner football

Japan will begin their FIFA U-17 World Cup Group E campaign against Honduras in Guwahati on Sunday.

fifa-u17-world-cup-2017 Updated: Oct 07, 2017 19:13 IST
Rahul Karmakar
Rahul Karmakar
Hindustan Times, Guwahati
Japan will face Honduras in their FIFA U-17 World Cup opener.
Japan will face Honduras in their FIFA U-17 World Cup opener.(FIFA)

Football in Japan is going green and the island nation hopes the colour would make the beautiful game more beautiful across the globe.

Japan’s FIFA U-17 World Cup team, slotted in Group E along with France, Honduras and New Caledonia, has come to India not only with a mission to improve upon their previous best performance – quarterfinal berth in 1993 and 2011.

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But the blue Samurais have also brought their idea of green card that strives to promote clean football to an extent that the yellow and red cards used by referees for foul play become redundant.

The Japan Football Association (JFA) had a few years ago introduced the green card system in matches of the four categories of children under 12.

The system requires the referee to show the green card to the playing teams’ benches when blowing the final whistle. The card is dependent upon compassion shown for injured players, apologies and handshakes in case of unintended fouls, self-assessment when the ball crosses the lines for throw-ins, corner kicks, goal kicks and goals and preventing teammates from behaving problematically.

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The green card also means positive behaviour without receiving warnings or expulsions.

According to JFA, the impact of the green card remains with the players as they grow up to represent clubs or the national team in tournaments for teenagers and seniors.

“The green card system is part of Japan Respect Project that JFA and J-League (Japanese league) started in 2008. Showing respect to an opponent is important in Japanese culture and we want it to be in our style to increase the value of the sport,” an official accompanying the Japanese U-17 team said.

“Apart from France, we are sure of the strength of our other opponents in the knockout stage but we hold them in high esteem. Our priority is to earn as many points fairly and by showing exemplary behaviour on the field,” Japan’s chief coach Yoshiro Moriyana said.

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Japan are scheduled to open their Group E campaign versus Honduras on October 8. France take on its overseas territory New Caledonia in the opening match of the group on Sunday.

First Published: Oct 07, 2017 18:53 IST

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