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History of Japanese Soccer


Japan participated in the 5th Far Eastern Championship Games (Shanghai) in May. This competition represented the first time in Japanese soccer that a Japanese national team had been sent overseas (P2 L2).

On September 10, the pending Greater Japan Football Association was established, and the 1st All-Japan Championship (now the Emperor's Cup) was held in November as the All-Japan Association Football Championship Tournament, making 1921 a year that truly signified the steps towards Japan's future in the sport.

It had been two years since the end of World War I, and despite some social contradictions, Japan - which had not suffered greatly in the conflict - was seeing a gradual improvement in living standards for ordinary people, with sports being encouraged in many schools, and the emergence of players celebrated on a national level. At such a time, the organization of a governing body for soccer represented a major step both for the domestic spread of the sport and for new opportunities in international competition.

The team chosen to represent Japan in the 5th Far Eastern Championship Games was an All-Kanto Select team, which had earned this right by beating Kwansei Gakuin in the national preliminaries, and it is said that the members of this team had received coa

Japan Soccer
  • Apr Association football club formed at Waseda High School
  • Apr Keio Association Football Club founded
  • May Participates in 5th Far Eastern Championship Games (Shanghai)
  • Sep Greater Japan Football Association (JFA) founded. Jikichi Imamura is first president
  • Nov 1st All-Japan Championship Tournament
World Soccer
  • Mar Jules Rimet appointed as third FIFA president. Efforts begin towards organization of World Cup


  • 4th Japanese Football Tournament
    (Toyonaka - 12 teams participate)
    Final -- Mikage Normal School 3-0 Himeji Normal School

  • 4th Kanto Football Tournament
    (Tokyo -- 12 teams participate)
    Final -- Toshima Normal School 6-1 Saitama Normal School

  • 1st All-Japan Championship Tournament(Currently, Emperor's Cup)
    ・Eastern qualifying tournament (November -- 20 teams participate)
    Final -- Tokyo Football Club 2-0 Aoyama Normal School

    ・Central qualifying tournament (September -- 3 teams participate)
    Winner -- Nagoya Football Club

    ・Kinki qualifying
    Nominee -- Mikage Normal School

    Few participating teams, Yamaguchi High School accepted

    ・National finals tournament (Tokyo, November)
    Semi-finals -- Mikage Normal School 4-0 Nagoya Football Club
    Tokyo Football Club W/O Yamaguchi High School

    Final -- Tokyo Football Club 1-0 Mikage Normal School

National Team

  • 5th Far Eastern Championship Games
    (May-June, Shanghai)
    Japan 1-3 Philippines
    Japan 0-4 Republic of China


  • Mar Crown Prince Hirohito departs for tour of Europe (March 30-September 2)
  • Sep Japan participates in Davis Cup in tennis for first time. Team of Ichiya Kumagai and Zenzo Shimizu beats India and Australia, but falls at final hurdle to United States
  • Oct Crown Prince Hirohito appointed as regent
  • Dec Four-Power Treaty between Japan, United Kingdom, United States, and France signed at the Washington Naval Conference (Anglo-Japanese Alliance terminated)
  • May United States Secretary of State warns that Japanese occupation of Siberia is not recognized
  • Jul Adolf Hitler becomes leader of Nazi Party
  • Nov Italian National Fascist Party hold national conference in Rome
  • Nov Sun Yat-sen's Guangdong government assembles troops in north