Japan will face a Norwegian side that has struggled thus far at the FIFA Women’s World Cup, with the Nadeshiko sure to feel confident of their progression given the Grasshoppene’s poor form. Japan topped their group following a resounding win over Spain, ensuring they’d face the second-placed team in Group A.
Futoshi Ikeda’s Japanese side certainly look like a team capable of seriously challenging for the trophy come August 20, with impressive defensive performances ensuring they’re yet to concede at the tournament. Combine that with an incredibly efficient attacking presence, and the Nadeshiko look almost unbeatable.
Japan opened their campaign with a five-goal demolition of Zambia, before putting two past a less-than-impressive Costa Rican side. They then thrashed their Spanish counterparts by a clear four-goal margin, ensuring they would progress as the winners of Group C.
Norway’s tournament commenced in the worst possible fashion, as they were defeated by New Zealand in the opening match of the tournament at Auckland’s Eden Park. They were then held to a goalless draw by Switzerland, before cruising to a six-goal victory against the Philippines.
Futoshi Ikeda is likely to recall Yui Hasegawa and Minami Tanaka to his starting lineup, after resting the duo against Spain.
Norway are likely to name an unchanged lineup after recording their first win of the tournament last time out.
Japan: Yamashita; Takahashi, Kumagai, Minami; Shimizu, Hayashi, Hasegawa, Endo; Miyazawa, Naomoto, Tanaka
Norway: Mikalsen; Bjelde, Mjelde, Harviken, Hansen; Maanum, Bøe Risa, Reiten; Hansen, Haavi, Haug