June 19th Japan wins a historic match against Columbia. It was a match that had plenty of talking points. A cleverly taken free kick, the 1st red card of the world cup 2018, and a remarkable win of the samurai’s against American. Japan beats the Columbia with 2-1 in the opening match.
It was for the first time when an Asian teams defeat a South American team. Columbia played with courage but ultimately they paid the price by giving a penalty. Senegal 2-1 win over Poland boosted the Japan hopes of progressing to the knockout stages: though Columbia and Poland were expected to win in Tuesday match.
Japan coach Akira Nishino talked about his psychological situation before the match in an interview. He was worried because of the earthquake that hits the 2nd largest city in Japan, Osaka during the morning. On behalf of the team, Captain Makoto Hesebe shows his sympathy to those players who were affected in the earthquake” Goalkeeper Masaaki Higashigushi plays professionally there, while Osaka was the birthplace of midfield attacker Keisuke Honda“.
After the match started Japan team have no time to think about the disaster, they could not be done well in the previous six world cups, went ahead in the opening minutes thanks to a Shinji Kagawa penalty. Carlos Sanchez was red carded within the 2 minutes and 56 second—the 2nd quickest sent off in the world cup history – and the first red card of the world cup 2018, and the penalty was taken by the former player of Manchester UTD Kagawa.
In spite of this disadvantage Columbia played boldly in the first half and leveled the score before the break with a cleverly taken free kick. Japan’s goalkeeper allowed the ball into the net and Columbia was back into the match.
The second half was all Japan; however, in the 73rd minute Yuya Osako headed the corner taken by Honda and secures the victory for his team. Although it was their fifth winning of the World cup history.