Japan midfielder Yuto Nagatomo reckons that they have nothing to fear when they take on Belgium in Rostov in one of the eight round of 16 clashes at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia on Sunday.
Japan qualified for the next round of the competition as runners up in group H, edging Senegal on fair play points despite losing their final group game to Poland by a lone goal and finishing with the same points and goal difference with the African side.
He admits that the game will be tough on Sunday but is banking on his side’s teamwork and hard work which he believes has got them this far.
“The other three teams in the group have more quality than us and every game was difficult,” Nagatomo told FIFA.com.
“The result (qualification) is something we can be glad about.”
“We acknowledge what we are capable of now, and we have played tenaciously,” he said.
“This time, every player has done the basic thing of keeping running until the end of the game. And we have been united as a team. I think that’s the main reason why we’ve gone through this time.
“It will definitely be a hard match. Belgium are a better team than us. However, Japan can now play with confidence. We have nothing to lose,” he concluded.