27 September 2019 – Banyana Banyana will face former World Champions Japan in an international friendly match scheduled for Sunday, 10 November 2019.

The clash will take place at the Kitakyushu Stadium in Fukuoka, Japan.

Kickoff is at 15h00 local time (08h00 South African time – Japan is seven hours ahead).

As hosts of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics Games, the Asians have automatically qualified for the tournament and they are using this match to get ready.

The Games run from 24 July to 9 August.

“We are very excited to be playing this match because Japan is one of the powerhouses in women’s football. I am confident this is going to be a great spectable and we looking forward to this match, which comes after the huge disappointment of being knocked out of the Olympic quaifiers,” said Banyana Banyana head coach Desiree Ellis.

“Once again our greatest gratitude to SAFA and our proud sponsor Sasol for making sure they keep the team going, more so against such top quality opposition. It may seem far but we still have AFCON qualifiers next year so we have to be preparing all the time and always be ready.”

This will be the second ever ever meeting between the two nations, and Ellis knows all too well that they are a very formidable side.

The first match was at the London Olympic Games in July 2012 in the group stages, and it ended in a goalless draw at Millenium Stadium in Cardiff.

Some of the players from the current squad that was at that match include Robyn Moodaly, Nothando Vilakazi, Janine van Wyk, Leandra Smeda, Noko Matlou, Refiloe Jane.

“Japan is the leader in Asia and a former World Champion. They have won the World Cup at U17, U20 and Senior level, so they are very tough customers,” added the former Banyana Banyana captain.

“They are similar in the way we want to play so this is a great opportunity to get learn more from them. They are further ahead than us in their development so it will be huge test for us. They run non-stop and that means we have to be in a good physical shape and stay fully concentrated for the duration of the game. They are small in stature like us and have perfected their way of playing – their passing and movement off the ball is something we can learn from. Technically and tactically they are very effective and do the simple things well.”

Japan is ranked 11thin the world, with Banyana Banyana coming in at 49.

In their respective continents (AFC and CAF), they both occupy third positions.

South Africa and Japan were at the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France – with Banyana Banyana being knocked out in the group stages, while the Asians departed the scene in the next round of 16.

The country has been ever present in the Women’s World Cup since the inaugural tournament in 1991. They were crowned champions in 2011 following a 3-2 penalty shootout victory over the current world champions USA – after the scores were level at 2-2 at the end of extra time.

In the following edition in 2015, they finished in second place.

Japan have won the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Women’s Asian Cup twice.

In their last five fixtures, Japan has won just one, drawn two and lost the other two.

The Asians will also host Canada four days (6 October) before playing South Africa.

FIXTURE:                                  Japan vs Banyana Banyana

DATE:                                        Sunday, 10 November 2019

VENUE:                                     Kitakyushu Stadium

Fukuoka, Japan

MATCH TITLE:                      International Friendly Match

KICK-OFF TIME:                   15h00 local time

(08h00 South African time – Japan is seven hours ahead)






FIFA Women’s World Cup

Champions: 2011

Runners-up: 2015


Olympic Games

Runners-up: 2012



AFC Women’s Asian Cup

Champions: 2014,2018

Runners-up: 1986,1991, 1995, 2001


Asian Games

Champions: 2010,2018

Runners-up: 1990,1994, 2006, 2014



•   EAFF Women’s Football Championship

Champions: 2008,2010

Runners-up: 2013,2017



2 June 2019

Japan 1 – 1 Spain




10 June 2019

Japan 0 – 0 Argentina

FIFA Women’s World Cup (Group Stages)



14 June 2019

Japan 2 – 1 Scotland

FIFA Women’s World Cup (Group Stages)



19 June 2019

Japan 0 – 2 England

FIFA Women’s World Cup (Group Stages)



25 June 2019

Japan 1 – 2 Netherlands

FIFA Women’s World Cup (Round of 16)