Japan beat Colombia 2 – 1 in their World Cup opener in Group H

Japan beat Colombia 2-1 on Tuesday, June 19, 2018 in their World Cup opener in Group H at the ongoing 2018 Fifa World Cup at the Mordovia Arena, Saransk, Russia. Japan’s Yuya Osako got the all-important winner in the second half with 17 minutes remaining on the watch, but the South American could not come back as they did in the first half.

The encounter at Saransk saw Colombia superstar, James Rodriguez named on the bench due to a lingering calf injury, but that did not stop the South Americans taking the early initiative. The Asian representatives on the other hand, could barely touch the ball as the Colombians were looking very comfortable in possession.

However, on the 4th minute Yuya Osako changed the situation for Japan following a fast break, but his effort failed to beat Ospina in a one-on-one situation. Dortmund’s Shinji Kagawa followed Osako early attempt with another shot at goal but his effort was blocked by the arm of Carlos Sanchez.

The Centre referee, Damir Skomina did not need the VAR before sending Sanchez off as well as pointing to the spot. Japan’s Germany-based Kagawa stepped-out and converted coolly from the spot after waiting for Ospina to commit himself before rolling the ball the other way. On the 12th minute mark, Colombia’s Falacao had a great chance to level scores after a free-kick was floated into the Japan area, but the Monaco’s star got a touch on the stretch, but that was not enough to guide the ball past Kawashima in Japan goal.

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