DOHA, Qatar -- Japan captain Maya Yoshida is aware that -- against four-time champions Germany in their 2022 FIFA World Cup Group E opener on Wednesday -- his side will need as much support as they can get in what will undoubtedly be a testing encounter.
It is for that precise reason why he hopes they will not just have the backing of their own supporters at Khalifa International Stadium, but from fans across all of Asia.
The pride of the continent is certainly at stake after hosts Qatar's lacklustre display in a 2-0 loss to Ecuador on the opening night of the tournament was followed on Monday by a humbling 6-2 defeat that Iran suffered at the hands of England.
Nonetheless, Saudi Arabia did hit back for the Asian contenders on Tuesday with a stunning come-from-behind 2-1 win over the mighty Argentina, with the Japanese will now be looking to follow suit against Germany.
"Of course, we have watched the games of Iran and Qatar -- it's been a tough start from the Asian countries," replied Yoshida, when asked by ESPN about the importance for Japan to avoid similar results in the pre-match news conference on Tuesday afternoon -- which was held prior to Saudi Arabia's remarkable triumph.
"I hope and wish we'll have many supporters coming from Asia. In Qatar, there are so many people from other countries, especially Asia -- like India and Philippines.
"Of course, we're representing Japan but, at the same time, we're also representing Asia. Hopefully, many fans come to the stadium -- not just Japanese but many Asian fans who are going to support us, because Germany is so strong that we'll need some (extra) support."
Germany may be the favourites heading into the game but they are far from unbeatable.
Just at the last World Cup, as the then-defending champions and with their knockout round hopes on the line, Germany fell to a shock 2-0 loss to another Asian team in the form of South Korea to suffer an embarrassing group-stage exit.
It is this potential for upsets to occur, especially at a tournament like the World Cup, that fuels Japan's belief that they too can pull off a surprise.
"As I've said many times, it's going to be tough but there's no such game which exists that we are certain to lose.
"In football, sometimes there are 'must-win' games but there isn't a 'must-lose' game, so we still believe we have a good chance."
Having set the target of a maiden quarterfinal appearance at this World Cup, a positive result against Germany would go a long way in boosting the Samurai Blue's prospects as they follow up Wednesday's opener with a much more winnable tie against Costa Rica before finishing the group stage with another tough tie against Spain.