Japan’s forward #18 Takuma Asano (C) celebrates with teammates after scoring his team’s second goal during the Qatar 2022 World Cup Group E football match between Germany and Japan at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on November 23, 2022. (Photo by Anne-Christine POUJOULAT / AFP)

By Emmanuel Okogba

Ritsu Doan and Takuma Asano who ply their trade in the German Bundesliga scored within the space of eight minutes to shock favourites Germany in their World Cup opener on Wednesday, coming from a goal down in the first half.

İlkay Gündoğan had opened scoring from the spot to put the 2014 winners ahead in the 33rd minute.

The defeat was consecutive World Cup opening match losses for Germany that also lost 1-0 to Mexico at the 2018 edition.

While Ritsu Doan who is attached to FC Freiburg drew his side level in the 75th minute, Takuma Asano with VfL Bochum put the final nail in Germany’s ‘coffin’ in the 83rd, beating Neuer from near post.

Japan’s win will sort of pacify for the similar fashion they crashed out of the 2018 edition, losing 3-2 having led Belgium 2-0 up until the 69th minute.

Japan will now go into their next group game against Costa Rica knowing that a win send them into the next round of competition. For Germany, it doesn’t get easier as they face Spain next.


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