FOOTBALL NEWS

25/06/2014 09:31, Report by James Tuck

Shinji's apology to fans

Shinji Kagawa apologised to fans after Japan's 4-1 defeat by Colombia ensured their elimination from the 2014 World Cup at the group stage.

Hopes were high that the Samurai Blue could go far in Brazil after they cruised through qualifying, but they finished bottom of Group C with just a solitary point from three games.

Shinji was restored to the starting line-up against Colombia after being dropped to the bench for the goalless draw with Greece, but he couldn't inspire Alberto Zaccheroni's side to the victory they needed, as the South Americans scored three second-half goals.

It was a premature end to Kagawa’s first World Cup finals and the Manchester United playmaker said: "I know many fans were rooting for us and I felt their strong expectations.

"But I just wasn’t good enough to achieve anything and I feel sorry for letting them down. It is frustrating that the World Cup is now over."

Asked about his outlook for the future, he replied: "My career goes on. It might take some time to accept this but I’ll prepare myself to move on."

More: Kagawa bows out of Brazil 2014Reds in Brazil blog

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