The players of Japan and Spain qualified for the round of 16 of the World Cup in Qatar after the last two games in Group E were played tonight. After a great turnaround, Japan defeated Spain with a score of 2:1, while Germany celebrated a pyrrhic victory against Costa Rica 4:2.
In the end, Japan finished the group stage in first place with six points, while Spain and Germany are tied for second place. The goal difference was decided, so Spain (9:3) finished ahead of Germany (6:5). Costa Rica finished the group in the fourth position with three points.
“For Asia and for Japan, our victories over Spain and Germany, two of the top teams in the world, is something that give us great confidence and we are very pleased,” Japan coach Hajime Moriyasu said. “Of course, there are many things we still have to learn, but Asia can win in the world stage, Japan can win in the world stage”.
By the way, Spain took the lead in the 11th minute after Morata scored, and after the first half that ended with a score of 1:0, everything seemed to be going according to plan. Luis Enrique said Spain “got into collapse mode”.
“We totally lost control during those five minutes. We panicked,” Luis Enrique said. “If they had to score more goals, they would have been able to do it. They got past us like an airplane”. However, just six minutes into the match was enough for Japan to make a big turnaround.
First, Doan scored to make it 1:1, and then Tanak scored the second goal for Japan. There were no changes until the end, so Japan achieved a victory worthy of a passage to the round of 16.
Costa Rica and Germany played a great game.
Similar to the second game, the favorites Germany took the lead at halftime with an early goal from Gnabry.
And then a complete shock because Costa Rica turned the score around. The scorers were Tejeda and Vargas. However, Germany scored the second goal in the 73rd minute, and the scorer was Havertz. By the end of the match, the Germans managed to score two more goals through Havertz and Fullkrug for the final 4:2.
Japan will play against Croatia in the round of 16 and that match is scheduled for Monday. A day later, Spain will play their Round of 16 matches against Morocco.
Result and scorers:
- Japan - Spain 2:1 (Doan 48', Tanaka 51' - Morata 11')
- Costa Rica - Germany 2:4 (Tejeda 58', Vargas 70' - Gnabry 10', Havertz 73', 85', Fullkrug 90+1')