Japan coach Philippe Troussier believes his side’s 1-0 win over Russia had justified the confidence the public had shown in the team.
“It was an extraordinary match – we saw a great Japan side tonight, with great players. Our win was deserved,” said Troussier.
“It is a very important moment for Japanese football. The Japanese people had confidence in us these last four years and we were aware of that.
“We felt it again today. They can have confidence in us for the future.
“With four points we’re well-placed to qualify. We must concentrate now,” he added.
“Everything will be on our last match but with four points we’re on our way.”
Russia coach Oleg Romantsev was upbeat despite the loss, stressing that his team were still in control of their own destiny.
“You’re never happy with a loss, but the only consolation is that the tournament is still going on,” Romantsev said.
“We have a match against Belgium to play and if we win we will go through – so our destiny is still in our hands,” Romantsev said.