(IN THE PHOTO: Honda is put through his paces) 

MILAN – After finishing the group stage with maximum points, Japan have been eliminated from the Asian Cup at the quarter final stage by the United Arab Emirates.

The match ended 1-1 in normal time while neither side was able to score a winner in extra-time. During the penalty shoot-out the UAE came out on top 5-4.

Keisuke Honda played the entire 120 minutes of the match for his country, providing the assist for Gaku Shibasaki’s equaliser on 81 minutes after UAE took the lead on 7 minutes. The Milan star was then one of the unlucky ones during the penalty shoot-out and missed the first penalty for Japan.

Honda’s Asian Cup adventure may have come to an end, but it has been a very positive tournament on a personal level for the 28 year-old. Of the 7 goals scored during the group stages, Honda was on the score-sheet an impressive 3 times.