Posted: Wednesday, November 23, 2022. 9:53 am CST.
Photo Credit: FIFA
By Rubén Morales Iglesias: Japan emulated Saudi Arabia by beating Germany 2-1 in a come-from-behind victory at the Khalifa International Stadium in Ar-Rayyan, Qatar, in front of 42,608 fans.
The Japanese gave notice of what they intended to do but their first goal by Daizen Maeda was called off in the 8th minute ruled offside. To be fair, Germany also had a İlkay Gündogan goal ruled offside in the 20’.
But Gündogan, who was pushing forward constantly was undeterred and put Germany ahead with a penalty kick in the 33rd minute.
However, Japan worked their way back, drawing even in the 75th. German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, who along with the Japanese keeper Shuichi Gonda had been making spectacular saves, pushed out a fierce shot at his goal but this time served the ball for Ritsu Doan to slam it into the net for the 1-1 score.
Japan kept pushing forward and produced a superb goal in the 83rd on a strike by Takuma Asano who fired between Neuer and the right post to give Japan the go-ahead and definitive goal.
For Germany it’s more of the same. After winning the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, they crashed out in Russia losing two of three in the group stage, and now they started in the same manner, stumbling against Japan.
For the Japanese, this is their seventh consecutive World Cup participation, and this is their best start. In three out of seven they’ve won their opening match. In 2010 in South Africa, they beat Cameroon 1-0 and in Russia they defeated Colombia 2-1, but today’s similar win over Germany is far bigger since the European side are one of the favourites to win it all.
Next time out, on Sunday, November 27, Japan will battle Costa Rica at 4:00 am while Germany will match up against Spain at 1:00 pm.
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