Japan stuns four-time champions

November 24, 2022 4:37 am

[Source: FIFA World Cup]

Japan produced a late comeback to see four-time winners Germany fall 2-1 in their opening World Cup game in Qatar.

Germany dominated for large spells but failed to capitalise on their pressure.

Substitute Takuma Asano squeezed in a thumping strike from a tight angle to make it 2-1 to Japan.

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There was a collective pause in the arena as the ball rolled down from the roof of the net before supporters realised it had gone in.

Manchester City’s Ilkay Gundogan had given Germany the lead from the penalty spot in the first half, before Japan substitute Ritsu Doan equalised in the 75th minute.

The equaliser came after a string of stunning saves at each end – Japan’s Shuichi Gonda pulling off a double stop to deny Serge Gnabry and Jonas Hofmann, before Germany’s Manuel Neuer got his fingertips to Junya Ito’s effort.

Germany, who finished bottom of their group in Russia in 2018, had missed several chances to extend their lead when the score was 1-0.

Japan faces Costa Rica next on Sunday while Germany will try and redeem themselves in their next match against Spain on Monday.

[Source: BBC]