‘Samurai Blue’ couldn’t surpass ‘Viking’.
The Japanese women’s national soccer team (ranked 11th in the FIFA rankings) defeated Sweden (FIFA rankings) in the quarterfinals of the 2023 International Football Federation (FIFA) Australia-New Zealand Women’s World Cup held at Eden Park in Auckland, New Zealand at 4:30 pm (Korean time) on the 11th. 3) and was eliminated in the quarterfinals after losing 1-2.
Japan started the game in a 3-4-3 formation. Hinata Miyazawa, Mina Tanaka, Aoba Fujino, Hina Sugita, Yui Hasegawa, Fuka Nagano, Risa Shimizu, Moeka Minami, Saki Kumagai, Hana Takahashi, and Ayaka Yamashita were named in the starting list.
Sweden had a 4-2-3-1 formation. Stina Braksteinus, Fridorina Rolpo, Kosovari Aslani, Johanna Kanerid, Elin Rubensson, Filippa Angeldahl, Jonah Andersson, Magdalena Ericsson, Amanda Ilestedt, Natalie Bjorn, Zekira Musovic sortie did.
Along with Australia (10th in the FIFA rankings), China (14th in the FIFA rankings), and Korea (17th in the FIFA rankings), Japan is considered one of the “four great players in Asia”. He peaked with the 2011 Germany World Cup victory and the 2015 Canada World Cup runner-up, but was eliminated in the round of 16 at the 2019 World Cup in France, swallowing regret. As much as that, Japan took on the 2023 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand with extraordinary determination.
The group stage was expected to pass smoothly. This is because the objective power gap between Spain and Japan, Costa Rica (36th in FIFA rankings) and Zambia (77th in FIFA rankings) was large. Japan was great. With clean wins over Zambia (5-0 win) and Costa Rica (2-0 win), they secured their place in the round of 16 early. Depending on the result of Spain, the first and second place were divided.
It wasn’t over. Japan completely defeated Spain (4-0 win). Hinata Miyazawa took the lead in the 12th minute, Riko Yuki added in the 29th minute, and Miyazawa multi-goal in the 40th minute quickly widened the gap. At the end of the game, Mina Tanaka, who was substituted, reached the peak by shaking the net.
In the end, Japan passed the group stage with amazing results of ‘3 wins from 3 matches’ and ’11 goals and 0 conceded goals’. After advancing to the tournament, they defeated Norway (3-1 win) in the round of 16. Expectations were rising that he could repeat the glory of being the world champion in 2011.안전놀이터
But this time it was different. After the kickoff, Japan was swung by Sweden, which boasted overwhelming physicality. Sweden had a decisive chance in the 24th minute of the first half by Braksteinus, but the shot went wide. Japan looked for a chance with a Shimizu cross in the 27th minute of the first half, but it was canceled.
Eventually, the balance was broken. In the 32nd minute of the first half, a chaotic situation occurred after a free kick developed in a dangerous area. With Bjorn’s shot deflected, Ilestedt shook the net after passing through Ericsson. As Japan rushed into the second half, they counterattacked by putting in Jun Endo.
The gap widened further. Sweden’s corner kick in the 2nd minute of the second half. The ball hit Nagano’s arm after Andersson’s cross. The referee declared a penalty kick (PK) after a video review (VAR) on-field review. Angeldahl, who started as a kicker, finished cleanly and scored an additional goal.
Japan, in a hurry, put Riko Ueki in and pulled the reins. It’s not that there wasn’t an opportunity. In the 28th minute of the second half, Ueki was fouled in the process of breaking through into the penalty box and got a PK. However, Ueki’s shot as a direct kicker hit the crossbar.
In the 42nd minute of the second half, Japan, which included Seike Kiko and Hayashi Honoka, chased after Hayashi’s goal, but ran out of time. In the end, Japan was knocked out by Sweden in the quarterfinals. Now, among the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) member countries, only Australia, the host country to face France, remains.