Yet another thumping victory for team Japan against their arch-rivals, China. The Japanese team dominated the entire match giving China just two chances, both of which were off target.
The Hosts, Japan welcomed their fellow group members, China in an exciting match at the Saitama Stadium, situated in Midori ward, Japan. It was a must-win match for the Chinese side as they wanted their hopes of qualifying for the FIFA World Cup 2022 to be alive.
Already sitting in the automatic qualification spot, the Japanese just wanted to make their position more solid and a win against their arch-rivals would help them achieve this.
The match went underway at 3:30 PM IST with both teams were backed by their full-fit squads. Both the Japanese and Chinese were in their traditional Blue and Red Jerseys.
Dominant First Half
The match went underway with the Japanese team leading the proceedings. An early long-range shot by captain Wataru Endo came as a warning sign for the Chinese team. This was followed by a deadly attack led by star striker Osako, who just missed the spot.
Osako was Japan’s main attacking channel as he won a penalty on the 12th-minute mark after he was tripped by a late challenge from the Chinese defense. This penalty was swiftly turned in by Osako who gave Japan a 1-0 lead.
After getting the first goal, Japan launched havoc on the Chinese defense, registering attack after attack. The Japanese side managed a total of 9 shots out of which 3 were on target.
The Chinese suffered the entire first half and weren’t able to create even a single attacking opportunity.
The Final Blow
The second half turned out to be even worse, as the Japanese kept launching deadly attacks. The Japanese possession-based play was fantastic as they managed to keep 75 percent of the total possession.
At the 62nd minute mark, Japanese right-winger, Junya Ito headed home a delicious cross by Yuta Nakayama from the left flank. After this, the Japanese were 2 goals to the good and ended all hopes of a Chinese comeback.
China did seem to get a bit lively near the 75th-minute mark with continuous attacks from the left flank but was easily dealt with by the Japanese defense.
The game was concluded as the Japanese won by two goals and kept a rather easy, clean sheet.
Impact of the Result
With this result, the hopes of China qualifying for the FIFA World Cup 2022 are almost finished. Standing fifth with just 5 points from their 7 games played, it seems very difficult for the Chinese side to go through the third round of the world cup qualifiers.
Japan, however, sits firmly on the second automatic qualification place but has to be careful in the upcoming games as the Australian National Teams treads closer to them and is only a single point behind.
Whatever the upcoming results might be, the Asian Qualifiers guarantee entertainment to all the football fans around the world as teams battle for their seat in the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2022.