Japan’s U-23 football team will travel to Cambodia next month for a friendly match with their local counterparts, the Cambodian Football Federation (FFC) announced yesterday.
“In preparation for the upcoming SEA Games 2023, the Cambodian National U-23 Team is pleased to welcome the Japanese National U-23 Team for a friendly match,” the FFC statement read.
Cambodian football is aiming for a better finish next year, following a less than stellar performance at the 2021 Southeast Asian Games.
In Vietnam, Cambodia were knocked out early, with just one win to go after four group stage matches.
Cambodia reached the round of 16 for the first time in history at the 2019 SEA Games. Warriors of Angkor finished fourth overall in Manila behind eventual champion Vietnam, runners-up Indonesia and third Myanmar square.
The new development comes after the FFC revealed earlier this week that the Bangladesh senior team will also travel to Cambodia next month for an international friendly with their local counterparts.
The Cambodia v Japan match will be played on September 20 at the Morodok Techo National Stadium in Phnom Penh, two days before the Bangladesh v Cambodia friendly match, which will be played at the same venue.
Cambodia beat Timor-Leste 2-1 in an international friendly in Phnom Penh two months ago.
Cambodia have yet to win a single game against Japan in an international football competition.
The Cambodian senior team have lost all four games against Japan since 1964, according to sports website 11×11. These include a few defeats in the 2015 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.
The Cambodian Under-23 side have lost twice to their Japanese counterparts in the past five years, the latest of which was in Asian Football Confederation Under-23 Asian Cup qualification (AFC) last year.
The Japanese team beat Cambodia, 4-0, and eventually finished top of Group K, local media reported. The group also included Hong Kong, which had been beaten by Cambodia earlier.
A huge crowd of football fans are expected to be present for the game.