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11 days to go: Nakamura’s perfect free-kick

06.06.2017

Japan’s 11th goal at the FIFA Confederations Cup was an absolute beauty.

In their group-stage tie against hosts France at the 2003 Tournament of Champions, Shunsuke Nakamura served up an amazing strike from outside the area that left Fabien Barthez with no chance. The ball went in off the post and into the bottom corner to draw the Samurai Blue level. However, six minutes later, Sidney Govou restored France’s advantage.

Dead-ball specialist Nakamura shone at that tournament, scoring three of his country’s four goals. He added another at Germany 2005 and remains Japan’s leading goalscorer at the Confederations Cup.