Japanese Players Leave 2023 Asian Cup After Alleged Sexual Harassment - Betting News | Sports News | Casinos News | Gaming Reviews

Japanese Players Leave 2023 Asian Cup After Alleged Sexual Harassment

Japan and Stade de Reims player, Junya Ito, left the national team at the 2023 Asian Cup following an alleged sexual harassment case on Thursday (1/2/2024). The Japanese news agency, Kyodo News, reported that Junya Ito was being investigated by Osaka police following reports from two women who were suspected of being victims of abuse.

According to the report, Ito was suspected of committing sexual acts when the two women were drunk at a hotel in Osaka in June 2023 after Japan’s friendly match against Peru. This news first appeared in the Daily Shincho media on Wednesday (31/1/2024), several hours before the Bahrain vs Japan match in the round of 16 of the 2023 Asian Cup.

In that match, Junya Ito did not play for the first time in the 2023 Asian Cup. He only sat on the bench to see Japan beat Bahrain 3-1. However, Japan coach, Hajime Moriyasu, admitted that he did not know the news about Junya Ito’s sexual harassment allegations before the match.

“I didn’t know (about the allegations). I will handle it after conducting an investigation,” said Moriyasu. The Japanese Football Federation is also investigating this case and feels there are several different reports. “This requires a cautious response. This action was taken without considering his mental and physical condition,” read the JFA statement.

Hajime Moriyasu has said that Junya Ito‘s withdrawal from Japan‘s Asian Cup squad after the publication of sexual assault allegations against him was a mutual decision. “I have spoken to Ito. He’s healthy enough to communicate, to speak. But mentally, I don’t think he’s in a state that he can play in a high-intensity football match.”

Meanwhile, lawyer Junya Ito said that the accusations were baseless. He considered the victim’s statements to be inconsistent and did not include physical evidence to support their accusations. Stade de Reims has also stated that they respect the investigation process and will wait until this case comes to light.

Japan is currently preparing to play Iran in the quarter-finals of the 2023 Asian Cup which will take place at the Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan, Saturday (3/2/2024). The coach insisted it won’t adversely affect his team ahead of their quarterfinal against Iran.

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