For the second time, Japan has withdrawn from the Copa America in the wake of the devastating March 11 quake and tsunami. Costa Rica will replace Japan in the 12-team tournament that will be played in July.
Japan's participation was initially cast into doubt after the huge earthquake and tsunami struck its Pacific coast. The JFA said it would go to the Copa America but has since been unable to convince European clubs to release its star players.
"Under the current circumstance, we cannot form a team competitive for Copa America," JFA President Junji Ogura told reporters in Tokyo. "Based on the judgment, we have unfortunately decided to decline,. It is extremely regrettable."