FIFA World Cup: Japan upset Germany, Belgium overcome Canada challenge, Spain thrash Costa Rica

0
5

Wake up each morning to our World Cup Wrap, bringing you a roundup of matches, goals and key talking points from all the night’s action.

Blue Samurai’s late show stuns Germany

It may not have been as shocking as Saudi Arabia’s victory over Argentina, but Japan’s 2-1 win over Germany certainly caused a stir.

Apart from Daizen Maeda’s goal which was ruled out for offside, Japan barely sniffled as Germany dominated the first half and took the lion’s share.

With Joshua Kimmich and Ilkay Gundogan pulling the strings in midfield, Japan were in tatters, could barely grab the ball and were lucky to have just one goal less at the break thanks to Gundogan’s penalty.

DOHA, QATAR - NOVEMBER 23: Germany's Niklas Suele reacts after Takuma Asano of Jpaan scored his team's second goal during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group E match between Germany and Japan at Khalifa International Stadium on November 23, 2022 in Doha, Qatar.  (Photo by Alex Grimm/Getty Images)
Camera iconGermany’s Niklas Suele reacts after Japan’s Takuma Asano scored his team’s second goal (Photo by Alex Grimm/Getty Images) Credit: Alex Grimm/Getty Images

The second half was more or less the same – Germany finished the game with 74% of the ball – and Jamal Musiala and Gundogan both came close to making it 2-0.

But the Germans had to pay for not taking a chance when Takumi Minamino’s low cross was pushed back by keeper Manuel Neuer, but only to Ritsu Doan, who made no mistake from close range.

And the Blue Samurai had the last laugh with less than 10 minutes remaining, when Takuma Asano caught Germany napping after a long ball and held off Nico Schlotterbeck to beat Neuer from a high angle.

Germany takes a stand

German players pose for the team photo as they cover their mouths during the World Cup Group E soccer match between Germany and Japan at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, Qatar, on Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2022. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)
Camera iconGerman players pose for the team photo as they cover their mouths during the World Cup Group E soccer match between Germany and Japan at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, Qatar, on Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2022. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi) Credit: Ebrahim Noroozi/PA

Before the match, Germany raged over FIFA and the organization’s decision to ban teams from wearing rainbow armbands in Qatar.

After FIFA warned players wearing the rainbow armbands, an attempt to show support for LGBTQI+ people in Qatar, would earn a yellow card, the Germans issued a pre-match statement expressing their strong displeasure facing the decision.

Before kick-off, the Germans gathered for their team photo and covered their mouths in protest, suggesting FIFA had tried to gag them, while German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser wore a One Love armband as she sat next to FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

Several stars, including Gundogan and Neuer, wore boots with rainbow stitching during the game and the entire team wore rainbow-colored tops on their sleeves during warm-ups.

Feisty Canada scares Belgium

Canada's Steven Vitoria battles for the ball with Belgium's Michy Batshuayi, right, during the World Cup Group F soccer match between Belgium and Canada at the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Doha, Qatar, on Wednesday, November 23, 2022. (AP Photo/ Natacha Pisarenko)
Camera iconCanadian Steven Vitoria battles for the ball with Belgian Michy Batshuayi (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko) Credit: Natasha Pisarenko/PA

A Mitchi Batshuayi strike was enough to give Belgium a somewhat undeserved 1-0 win over a resilient and feisty Canadian side in Group F.

Appearing at their first World Cup since 1986, Canada had a golden chance to score their first-ever World Cup goal when VAR deemed Yannick Carrasco had handled Tajon Buchanan’s shot into the box, but Thibaut Courtois saved the kick from Alphonso Davies. .

Undeterred, Canada continued to take the game to Belgium and it was just a well-taken strike from Batshuayi, after he latched on to Toby Alderweireld’s long ball at the dawn of midday. -time, which gave the advantage to the favorites.

The Canucks continued to probe and question their most touted opponents, and Courtois was again called into action to deny Cyle Larin’s header, but Belgium rose to the challenge of taking all three. points.

Croatia frustrated by tough Morocco

All eyes were on Croatia to see what they would serve as an encore after their run to the final in Russia four years ago.

Facing a Moroccan side that made things difficult for them, the response – for their opening game at least – was not huge.

The midfield duo of Luka Modric and Marcelo Brozovic predictably dominated the ball and played some great passes, but the organized North African side left Croatia little space in the last third.

Croatian Mario Pasalic, center, catches the ball during the World Cup Group F soccer match between Morocco and Croatia at Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor, Qatar on Wednesday, November 23, 2022. ( AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)
Camera iconCroatian Mario Pasalic, center, catches the ball (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez) Credit: Manu Fernandez/PA

Chelsea livewire Hakim Ziyech and the pace of Paris Saint-Germain’s Achraf Hakimi on the right side meant Morocco were still a threat at the break, and they looked dangerous in transition.

Moroccan midfielder Sofyan Amrabat proved important in helping to clog up space in midfield, while Yassine Bounou proved to be a pair of sure hands in goal.

It finished 0-0, and although Croatia had a lot to improve on in their next two games, the result was more a reflection of Morocco’s organization than any Croatian ineptitude.

Spain beat Costa Rica seven times

While their fellow Group E giants struggled to convert their dominance into goal, it was no problem for Spain, who crushed Costa Rica 7-0.

Dani Olmo got the party started after 11 minutes and Spain doubled their lead soon after through Marco Asensio, although goalkeeper Keylor Navas should have done better.

DOHA, QATAR - NOVEMBER 23: Gavi (L) of Spain celebrates with Aymeric Laporte after scoring his team's fifth goal during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group E match between Spain and Costa Rica at Al Thumama Stadium on November 23, 2022 in Doha, Qatar.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Camera iconDOHA, QATAR – NOVEMBER 23: Gavi (L) of Spain celebrates with Aymeric Laporte (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images) Credit: clive mason/Getty Images

Jordi Alba was knocked down in the box and Ferran Torres duly converted from the spot, and the Barcelona striker doubled when he jumped on some indecision in the Costa Rican defence.

Gavi made it 5-0 with a well-taken volley before Carlos Soler fired home after Navas could only parry Nico Williams’ cross in his way, while Alvaro Morata finished the rout in time additional.

Similar Posts:

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here