Japan earned a hard-fought victory over an underdog Vietnam

Japan earned a hard-fought victory over an underdog Vietnam.

Japan, ranked 17th by the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), defeated Vietnam, ranked 94th by FIFA, in the first match of Group D of the 2023 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Qatar Asian Cup at the Altumama Stadium in Doha, Qatar, on Thursday (June 14).

It was a sour taste in the mouth for the reigning Asian champions. Before the match, the Japanese were confident of defeating Vietnam.

“I think we can definitely win no matter who comes out,” said Ito Junya. Now that Kaoru Mitoma is injured, it will be Nakamura’s chance,” and the Japanese media focused on Hajime Moriyasu’s proper rotation rather than on wins and losses. However, the team’s performance against Vietnam was less than stellar, going down by two goals.

In fact, Moriyasu rested players he deemed not 100%, including Takefusa Kubo, Ayase Ueda, and Ritsu Doan. Instead, he pulled out a somewhat experimental lineup, with Hosoya Mao, who has little A-match experience, up front.

Japan started with a 4-2-3-1 formation.

Mao Hosoya, Keito Nakamura, Takumi Minamino, Junya Ito, Hidesama Morita, Wataru Endo, Hiroki Ito, Shogo Taniguchi, Ko Itakura, Yukinari Sugawara, and Zaion Suzuki made up the starting lineup.

Vietnam, coached by Philippe Trousier, lined up in a 3-4-3 formation. Nguyen Dinh Bac – Do Hung Hung – Pham Thuan Hai, Phan Thuan Thai – Nguyen Thai Son – Nguyen Thuan Aing – Pham Xuan Maing, Bui Hoang Viet – Bo Minh Trong – Nguyen Thanh Binh, and Nguyen Phillip took the field first.

Japan took an early lead. In the 11th minute, goalkeeper Nguyen Phillip failed to clear a corner kick from the left. Sugawara’s subsequent shot was blocked by the defense, 온라인카지노 but the rebound was calmly slotted home by Minamino to rattle the net.

Vietnam quickly equalized. In the 16th minute, a corner kick from the left side of the box found Nguyen Dinh Park, who made a huge dive towards the near post for a back header. The ball soared high and took an exquisite trajectory before slipping into the far corner.

Minamino was in fine form as he received a pass from a teammate near the arc in the 23rd minute, turned well and unleashed a bold left-footed shot, but the ball went just wide to the right of the post.

Vietnam threatened Japan in the 32nd minute when Nguyen Dinh Bac made a quick run into the back of the defense. Sugawara tried to stop him and was shown a yellow card for a dangerous tackle.

Vietnam capitalized on a good set piece opportunity to take the lead. In the 33rd minute

Nguyen Dinh Bac sent the ball into the box from a free kick, where Bui Hoang Viet Ainghong headed the ball away. Goalkeeper Suzuki couldn’t get a hand to it, and Pham Thuan Hai rushed in to finish easily.

Japan equalized again before the end of the first half. In the 45th minute, Endo delivered a pinpoint pass into the box. Minamino received the ball and struck a low right-footed shot into the corner of the net with precision. It was a stunning multi-goal effort that gave Japan some much-needed relief.

Japan crawled back into the game. In the fourth minute of first-half stoppage time, Nakamura picked up the ball on the left side of the box and unleashed a stunning right-footed curling kick that found the top right corner of the net. Minamino, who laid off the pass, added an assist to finish with two goals and one assist. Japan went into halftime with a 3-2 lead, extending their multi-goal streak to 11 games.

The second half was a much calmer affair. Japan didn’t push too hard, and Vietnam played cautiously, looking for an equalizer.

Japan threatened for the first time in a long time.

In the 18th minute of the second half, Ito used his speed down the left flank to get into the box before cutting back. The ball bounced off the defense and Morita took a direct shot, but it was blocked by the Vietnamese defense’s physical defense.

Further goals were not forthcoming. Minamino’s powerful volley in the 25th minute was headed straight at the goalkeeper, and Ayase Ueda’s decisive shot in the 29th minute was also blocked by the goalkeeper and ruled offside. Japan took Minamino off in the 39th minute and brought on Takefusa Kubo.

Japan scored their fourth goal to put the game out of reach. In the 40th minute, Kubo passed to Ueda in the center of the box. Ueda calmly beat his defender and fired a shot that deflected off a defender and into the back of the net.

Five minutes of second-half stoppage time were awarded. No more goals were scored, and the game ended with a 4-2 comeback victory for Japan. It was a dizzying game that could have been disastrous for Japan.

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