Football: Japan replaces Doan, Asano and Germany shock World Cup loss

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Japan famously claimed a 2-1 win over Germany at the World Cup on Wednesday, with Ritsu Doan and Takuma Asano scoring in the second half as part of a dramatic comeback in the tournament’s Group E opener.

Doan, who plays for German club Freiburg, was in the right place to fire in a rebound after fellow substitute Takumi Minamino fired a ball into the goal mouth that German keeper Manuel Neuer could only parry.

Just minutes later, Asano, of Bundesliga side Bochum, grabbed hold of a long ball and showed great control and power to stop a defender and hit it high into the net past the German stopper.

Doan’s strike in the 75th minute canceled out Ilkay Guendogan’s penalty in the 33rd minute, which he conceded after Japan goalkeeper Shuichi Gonda fumbled down defender David Raum.

Ritsu Doan (8) of Japan scores the equalizer in the second half of a World Cup Group E soccer match against Germany at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on November 23, 2022. (TBEN) ==TBEN

“I went out on the pitch with determination and told myself no one else but me can do it,” said Doan, turning his attention to Japan’s remaining group matches. “We will not get carried away and will play with determination again.”

Ritsu Doan (front) of Japan reacts after scoring the equalizer in the second half of a World Cup Group E soccer match against Germany at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on November 23, 2022. (TBEN) ==TBEN

Asano scored in the 83rd minute to thrill the Japanese fans in Qatar.

“I decided that I would take pictures when there was an opportunity. I had opportunities before that and that mentality led to the winner,” said Asano.

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Takuma Asano (C) shoots to score Japan’s second goal in the second half of a World Cup Group E soccer match against Germany at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on Nov. 23, 2022. (TBEN)

Takuma Asano of Japan reacts after scoring a goal in the second half of a World Cup Group E soccer match against Germany at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on November 23, 2022. (TBEN) ==TBEN

Captain Maya Yoshida said the Samurai Blue were inspired by fellow Asian Saudi Arabia’s stunning victory against another traditional powerhouse, Argentina, the previous day.

“We changed the formation and also took inspiration from Saudi Arabia coming back from a 1-0 deficit (against Argentina) to get a big result,” Yoshida said, stressing that his team’s task is still a long way off. has not been completed.

Maya Yoshida (front) of Japan passes the ball in the first half of a World Cup Group E soccer match against Germany at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on November 23, 2022. (TBEN) ==TBEN

“I’m super happy, but we just won one game and the next game is important. We want to prepare well and win the qualification by beating Costa Rica.”

Germany were completely dominant in the opening 70 minutes of the match played in front of 42,608 fans at the Khalifa International Stadium in Al Rayyan, with Hajime Moriyasu’s substitutions proving a masterstroke as Doan, Minamino and Asano all contributed to the competition turned upside down.

Japan’s Daizen Maeda (far left) reacts after having his goal disallowed for offside during the first half of a World Cup Group E football match against Germany at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on Nov. 23, 2022. (TBEN)

The four-time world champion was much better for long stretches of the game, with only Daizen Maeda offering a momentary bright spot as he went sideways into the back of the net from a cross from Junya Ito before being ruled offside.

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There were few other highlights for Japan in the first 45 minutes, with Maeda having another chance just before the whistle when he met a cross from Yuto Nagatomo, only to send it head wide.

Japan’s Daizen Maeda (2nd from right) heads wide during the first half of a World Cup Group E soccer match against Germany at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on Nov. 23, 2022. (TBEN)

Germany’s penalty was the result of a looping pass from Joshua Kimmich that found Raum in acres of space behind the Japanese defence. Raum turned and a chasing Gonda crashed into the German’s legs, leaving the referee with no choice but to point to the spot.

Guendogan stepped up and sent Gonda diving left as he put the ball in the middle.

Japan goalkeeper Shuichi Gonda (top) fouls Germany’s David Raum and concedes a penalty during the first half of a World Cup Group E football match at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on Nov. 23, 2022. (TBEN)

Japanese goalkeeper Shuichi Gonda concedes a goal from the penalty spot in the first half of a World Cup Group E soccer match against Germany at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on November 23, 2022. (TBEN) ==TBEN

Hansi Flick’s men could have been up two goals at half time, but Kai Havertz was denied when a video assistant referee’s check found him offside after coming on the end of a Serge Gnabry pullback.

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Guendogan hit the post in the 60th minute as Germany repeatedly attacked the Japanese area, with Gonda constantly on edge as his side failed to hold onto the ball.

Japanese goalkeeper Shuichi Gonda saves from German Serge Gnabry during the second half of a World Cup Group E soccer match at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on November 23, 2022. (TBEN)

However, Gonda recovered in the second half to make four virtually back-to-back saves in the 72nd minute before super subs Doan and Asano won the day for the men in blue.

“The whole team played as one with tenacity and that brought the victory,” said Moriyasu, who will prepare his side for their second group game against Costa Rica on Sunday. “We will look back at things that need to be looked at and aim to win the next game.”

Japanese players celebrate after beating Germany 2-1 in a World Cup Group E football match at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on Nov. 23, 2022. (TBEN)

Later on Wednesday, Spain defeated Costa Rica 7-0 to move to the top of the group on goal difference. Dani Olmo, Marco Asensio, Gavi, Carlos Soler and Alvaro Morata all scored and Ferran Torres added a double. Japan will take on the 2010 World Cup champions in their final group game on December 1.


Related coverage:

Football: “Big fan” Flick says Japan is offering a serious test for Germany

Football: Japan must “go with the flow” to beat Germany, manager says

Football: Germany star Sané from World Cup opener against Japan


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