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Japan vs Spain LIVE: World Cup 2022 result and reaction as Doan and Tanaka goals send Germany out

Japan staged another thrilling comeback to top Group E - with Spain through in second and Germany out

Kieran Jackson
Thursday 01 December 2022 22:04 GMT
Fifa World Cup: Results and reactions from day twelve

Japan staged their second stunning turnaround of the World Cup when they beat 2010 champions Spain 2-1 on Thursday with two quick-fire goals and advanced to the last 16 along with their beaten opponents.

Going into the halftime break 1-0 down and on course for an early World Cup exit, Japan coach Hajime Moriyasu reorganised his side to give them more attacking bite and within six minutes the Samurai Blue were ahead.

Ritsu Doan, one of the substitutes, hammered in a shot from the edge of the box in the 48th minute that Spain goalkeeper Unai Simon - whose poor clearance had created the danger - could not keep out. Three minutes later, Ao Tanaka scored from close range after the other halftime sub Kaoru Mitoma cut the ball back from the byline.

The breathtaking 2-1 win for Japan - who also beat Germany 2-1 after going behind in their opening match of the tournament - meant they topped Group E, followed by Spain in second who finished ahead of third-placed Germany only on goal difference.

Follow all the reaction with our live blog below


World Cup 2022: Japan 2-1 Spain - MATCH REPORT

By Miguel Delaney at the Khalifa International Stadium

The ultimate lost cause, a win of historic proportions. A game of literal inches, a night of monumental drama. One former World Cup winner is out. Another no longer look like potential champions. Japan, against that, have emerged as one of the stories and revelations of this tournament.

Kaoru Mitoma’s heroic chasing of a ball that seemed certain to go out of play saw Ao Tanaka score a goal for the ages on another night that will reverberate through football history. It didn’t just mean Japan did to Spain what they did to Germany with another 2-1 comeback. It meant they finished ahead of both in the group to subject Germany to the humiliation of elimination and Spain to the embarrassment of finishing second after having almost everything their own way.

They now look flawed and vulnerable rather than imperious and victorious, as well as pathetically dependent on a German favour.

It was, in truth, a night when justice was done after all sorts of trials and errors. Everyone got what they deserved. Japan are full value as group winners, since they were the one side who gave everything they have. Spain did not deserve to win either the game or the group given how arrogantly complacent they became in their own quality. Germany couldn’t beat Japan and could barely muster a victory against Costa Rica.

It ended up being what Spain required. They no longer look anything close to favourites. An irony, however, is they arguably have a more forgiving path through. They shouldn’t take Morocco too lightly on this evidence, though. Japan will meanwhile fancy facing anyone as they take on Croatia.

Japan stun Spain with thrilling comeback to snatch top spot

Japan 2-1 Spain: Ao Tanaka’s goal earned a win and top spot from Group E as La Furia Roja scraped through in second ahead of Germany

Kieran Jackson1 December 2022 21:29

World Cup 2022: Japan 2-1 Spain

So - Germany are out, for the second World Cup running!

Extraordinary! Since winning it in 2014, they haven’t reached the knockout-stages!

By Rich Jolly in Doha

Germany crash out of World Cup despite victory over Costa Rica

Spain's shock defeat by Japan meant the Germans were eliminated in the first round in Qatar, finishing third in Group E

Kieran Jackson1 December 2022 21:14

World Cup 2022: Japan 2-1 Spain

The Japanese squad sprint on to the pitch in celebration - they cannot believe it!

It’s over in the other game: Costa Rica 2-4 Germany. But Germany are out due to Spain’s superior goal-difference!

Japan have done it again! They lost to Costa Rica... but they’ve beaten Germany and Spain!

What a World Cup group-stage this has been so far!

(Getty Images)
Kieran Jackson1 December 2022 20:57

World Cup 2022: Japan 2-1 Spain

FULL-TIME! Japan have done it! They have beaten Spain - and top Group E!

And despite Germmany beating Costa Rica... they are out! Spain are through in second place.

Wow. Just wow.

(Getty Images)
Kieran Jackson1 December 2022 20:54

World Cup 2022: Japan 2-1 Spain

90+6 mins: Dani Olmo loses patience and shoots outside the box - but he drags it well wide!

Japan are almost there! Germany on the verge of exiting the World Cup...

Kieran Jackson1 December 2022 20:52

World Cup 2022: Japan 2-1 Spain

90+4 mins: Japan’s Morita down with cramp - he’s continuing though!

Spain keeping the ball... but aren’t fashioning any chances! Japan are rock solid in their shape!

Kieran Jackson1 December 2022 20:50

World Cup 2022: Japan 2-1 Spain

90 mins: Seven minutes of added time!

Seven huge minutes for Japan! Can they hold on for a remarkable top spot?!

And Germany are praying for a Spain goal so they can go through!

Kieran Jackson1 December 2022 20:48

World Cup 2022: Japan 2-1 Spain

89 mins: That was close - x2!

Asensio shoots from long-range, Gonda parries, but Japan just clear!

Then Olmo is played in from Torres - but he shoots straight at Gonda! Two big chances in the space of a minute!

Germany have a fourth against Costa Rica... but they need Spain to score here!

Kieran Jackson1 December 2022 20:47

World Cup 2022: Japan 2-1 Spain

87 mins: Whisper it quietly - Spain look a bit out of ideas here. Japan deep, but resilient.

Meanwhile, Germany have taken the lead against Costa Rica - Havertz again - so Spain now only through ahead of Germany due to goal-difference!

Change for Japan: Endo comes on for Kamada.

Kieran Jackson1 December 2022 20:43

World Cup 2022: Japan 2-1 Spain

84 mins: Asano looks like he’s clear - but Spain manage to get back to cover!

Dani Carvajal does well!

Spain risking a lot of men forward now....

Kieran Jackson1 December 2022 20:41

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