Japan's National Team: 1994
Paulo Roberto Falcao, the Brazilian midfielder who made a name at Sporting Club Internationale and Roma, had already done a fair amount of coaching before Japan tipped him to replace Ooft. However, while Ooft's success showed what a capable foreign coach can do to raise the level of a developing team, Falcao provided the counterexample, showing why sometimes it is best to look for home-grown talent in a national team coach.
Falcao lasted less than a year in the head coach position, and his reign at the helm of the Japan National Team is surely something that everyone involved in the situation, including himself, would like to forget.
Certainly, Falcao cannot bear all of the blame for the poor results that Japan recorded during his tenure. He had to deal with the same troublesome egos that Ooft confronted, as well as a great deal of meddling from individuals in the JFA. However, Falcao's problems were almost constant.
It seemed that Falcao was always in the middle of a spat with someone, whether it be a player, an assistant coach, members of the media or JFA officials. Above all, the attitude that he exuded -- expecting all of Japan to adapt to his attitudes and idiosyncrasies while making no effort to understand the culture of his new host country -- left him with virtually no supporters in any segment of the media, the football bureaucracy or the fan base.
On the field, his fortunes were no better. Apart from two wins against Ghana in mid-summer, the team's record was terrible. Perhaps if he had beern given a bit more time, he could have contributed something useful to the team. Clearly there were a lot of things about the Japan team of this era which needed a strong hand to fix them. His successor would end up falling victim to some of the same froblems Falcao was doing his best to eliminate - most of all, the way that veteran players lorded it over youngsters, even though the new generation was clearly more talented. When Falcao was fired at the close of 1994, the JFA turned to a domestic coach to try to rescue the national team from its slump.
Japan National Team Members Under Falcao
|Kazuya MAEKAWA||GK||Sanfrecce Hiroshima||188||2/0|
|Kenji HONAMI||GK||Gamba Osaka||186||3/0|
|Shinkichi KIKUCHI||GK||Verdy Kawasaki||181||5/0|
|Kenichi SHIMOKAWA||GK||JEF United Ichihara||187||0|
|Masami IHARA||DF||Yokohama Marinos||182||9/1|
|Yosihihiro NATSUKA||DF||Bellmare Hiratsuka||182||9/1|
|Yutaka AKITA||DF||Kashima Antlers||179||0|
|Koji KONDO||DF||Gamba Osaka||176||2/0|
|Yoshiro MORIYAMA||DF||Sanfrecce Hiroshima||175||7/0|
|Akira NARAHASHI||DF||Bellmare Hiratsuka||170||1/0|
|Masahiro ENDO||DF||Jubilo Iwata||179||8/0|
|Naoto OTAKE||DF||Yokohama Flugels||178||1/0|
|Teruo IWAMOTO||DF/MF||Bellmare Hiratsuka||178||9/2|
|Tetsuji HASHIRATANI||MF||Verdy Kawasaki||181||9/1|
|Tetsuya ASANO||MF||Urawa Reds||184||3/1|
|Hajime MORIYASU||MF||Sanfrecce Hiroshima||173||3/0|
|Tsuyoshi KITAZAWA||MF||Verdy Kawasaki||170||7/0|
|Masakiyo MAEZONO||MF||Yokohama Flugels||170||6/0|
|Masaaki SAWANOBORI||MF||Shimizu S-Pulse||170||6/1|
|Takahiro YAMADA||MF||Yokohama Marinos||174||1/0|
|Hiromitsu ISOGAI||MF||Gamba Osaka||177||0|
|Hisashi KUROSAKI||MF||Kashima Antlers||185||1/0|
|Kazuyoshi MIURA||FW||Verdy Kawasaki/Genoa||175||8/4|
|Nobuhiro TAKEDA||FW||Verdy Kawasaki||177||2/0|
|Kenta HASEGAWA||FW||Shimizu S-Pulse||177||2/0|
|Takuya TAKAGI||FW||Sanfrecce Hiroshima||188||5/2|
|Toshihiro YAMAGUCHI||FW||Gamba Osaka||176||2/0|
|Takafumi OGURA||FW||Nagoya Grampus||181||5/1|
|Shoji JO||FW||JEF United Ichihara||178||0|
|Yoshiaki SATO||FW||Urawa Reds||188||1/0|
"0" Indicates that the player was named to the team in this year,but did not appear in any international A matches.