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|September 6, 2000||
Japan warms up in styleJeremy Walker
A capacity crowd of almost 55,000 gave Japan a rousing Sydney send-off following a 3-1 victory over Morocco in an Olympic warm-up match at Tokyo's National Stadium.
Chants of "Troussier Nippon" rolled around the stadium on Tuesday night after the team's French coach, Philippe Troussier, walked on to the field to thank the fans for their support during the qualifying campaign.
The victory, courtesy of two own goals and a right-foot half-volley into the top corner from left-winger Masashi Motoyama, extended the under-23 team's winning streak to 17 games.
The sequence comprises the 12 Asian qualifiers for Sydney, during which Japan outscored their opponents 66-3, and five friendlies, taking the overall goals ratio to 84-5.
The 45-year-old Frenchman gave a short speech after the final whistle in which he praised the "effort and energy" of his players.
"I promise we will show the same qualities at the Olympics," he said.
Troussier, who is expected to sign a new contract this week taking him through to the 2002 World Cup, added: "I would also like to thank you for the trust and support you have shown in me."
Japan will leave for Australia on Saturday to prepare for their Group D games against South Africa, Slovakia and Brazil.
Japan have won Asia's only medal in men's soccer -- a bronze at the 1968 Mexico Olympics -- and the players are promised six million yen ($56,640) each if they could take the gold in Sydney.
Morocco had taken an early lead with a thundering right-foot drive from captain Faouzil El Brazi but buckled under relentless Japanese attacks.
The North African country's under-23 team is scheduled to fly to Sydney on Wednesday and will compete in the same group as South Korea, Spain and Chile.
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