Wales v Japan


Japan have qualified for the FIFA World Cup on seven occasions since their first appearance at the 1998 tournament in France including as joint hosts of the 2002 tournament alongside South Korea.

Japan are the most successful side at the Asian Cup, having won the tournament on four occasions.


The Japan Football Association was formed in 1921 joining FIFA in 1929 and the AFC in 1954.

The first unofficial match was a 0-5 loss against China, however, despite calling themselves Japan, this team was a Tokyo representative side rather than a national side.

The first truly national side played at the 1930 Far Eastern Championships, beating the Philippines 7-2 in their opening match.

Wales' only match against Japan came at the 1992 Kirin Cup, an invitational tournament hosted by Japan and also featuring Argentina.

Wales record v Japan

Head to Head


no.datescorescorers (wales)venue 
44107/06/1992Japan 0-1 WalesBowenNingineer Stadium, Ehime, Matsuyama

Japan Honours

AFC Asian Cup winners (4): 1992, 2000, 2004, 2011

AFC Asian Cup runners-up (1): 2019

Welsh players to have made their debut against Japan

No Welsh players have made their debut against Japan

Wales' opponents from Asian Football Confederation

Wales have faced eight countries from the current Asian Football Confederation.

Israel joined the AFC in 1954 and as such were an AFC member when they played against Wales in a 1958 FIFA World Cup play-off. However, at the Asian Games held in Iran in 1974, some Muslim and Arab countries refused to play against Israel in the football tournament. At the AFC Congress held during the games, Kuwait proposed Israel be excluded from all AFC competitions; a motion adopted by a vote of 17 to 13 with 6 abstentions.

Kuwait were Wales' next opponents from the AFC, with back to back matches played at The Racecourse, Wrexham and the Al Kuwait Sports Club Stadium, Kuwait City in 1977. Goalkeeper, Dai Davies, was unable to play in the return leg in Kuwait having been denied entry for having an Israeli stamp in his passport.

Iran, drawn in Scotland's group for the 1978 World Cup Finals in Argentina, invited Wales to Tehran as part of their tournament preparations.

With the end of the British Home Championships, the Football Association of Wales accepted lucrative offers to play Saudi Arabia in 1986 and to take part in Japan's Kirin Cup in 1992.

Valid XHTML 1.0 Strict Valid CSS!