Japan win fails to ease Zico's fears

Iceland 2 Japan 3
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The Independent Online

Zico, the Japan coach, fears that David Beckham will punish his players if they continue to give away free-kicks on the edge of the penalty area.

He was delighted to see his side come from behind to beat Iceland here in the first match of the FA Summer Tournament yesterday but admitted: "I am very worried that we are giving away so many free-kicks from outside the box - England have a player called David Beckham and if we do that against them then he will kill us. Before today we conceded three goals from dead-ball situations and then there were two more today - we cannot keep doing this if we want to make progress."

Heidar Helguson gave Iceland a fifth-minute lead with a freak goal when Japan goalkeeper Seigo Narazaki's two-fisted clearance from a Thordur Gudjonsson free-kick went in off the side of the Watford striker's face.

But two expertly-taken goals from the impressive Tatsuhiko Kubo put Japan 2-1 ahead at the interval. Helguson then equalised with a more orthodox header from another free-kick but in the end the Asian champions prevailed thanks to a penalty from the Brazilian-born Alex Santos.

Iceland played the last eight minutes of the match with 10 men after Brynjar Gunnarsson was sent off following a two-footed tackle.

Goals: Helguson (5) 1-0; Kubo (21) 1-1; Kubo (36) 1-2; Helguson (50) 2-2; Santos pen (57) 2-3.

ICELAND (4-4-2): Arason; Ingimarsson, I Sigurdsson (Baldvinsson, 76), J Gudjonsson, Marteinsson; B Gunnarsson, Hreidarsson, Gretarsson, T Gudjonsson; Gudjohnsen, Helguson. Substitutes not used: Finnbogason, K Sigurdsson, Helgason, Jonsson, T Gudmundsson, J Gudmundsson, B Gudjonsson.

JAPAN (4-4-2): Narazaki; Nakazawa, Miyamoto, Tsuboi (Ogasawara, h-t), Santos; Ono (Endo, 60), Nakamura (Motoyama, h-t), Inamoto (Fukunishi, h-t), Kaji; Kubo (Suzuki, h-t), Tamada (Yanagisawa, h-t). Substitutes not used: Doi, Kawaguchi, Miura, Tanaka, Chano, Fujita.

Referee: M Riley (England).

Attendance: 1,500.

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