Today, group H’s Japan and Poland played their last match of the group stages. With Poland in last place, going through to the final 16 was already impossible. For Japan, however, it was a different story.
Ideally, a win or even a draw for Japan would have been good, since Japan’s spot on the group leaderboard relied heavily upon the Senegal vs Colombia game.
In the 59th minute, Poland’s Bednarik scored a goal. This put Japan in a difficult spot – they needed at least a draw to go through. Japan’s attempts always came up short, though.
The Samurai Blue, although not playing great, got some luck. Colombia scored vs Senegal in the 74th minute. This put Japan just barely in second, ahead only due to a lower number of cards that Senegal.
With Japan just scrapping into second place in group H, instead of trying to win back the game, Japan played around with the ball until the match was over. Winning by 1-0, Poland also played around with the ball. Neither team particularly aiming to score. This ended up being a bizarre last 10 minutes where both teams were content to pass the ball back and forth, with few attempts to score a goal.
What did the Japanese think of the Blue Samurai performance?
While some are just thankful that Japan has made it to the last 16, other’s were not so impressed.
The second half of the game wasn’t interesting. For the last part, I was watching the Colombia vs Senegal game where Senegal was desperetately trying to score but lost. All the while, Japan and Poland were passing the ball round in circles. Apologise to Senegal, team Japan. – たーくん via Twitter.
Japan got carried away winning against a 10-man Colombia, thinking they could win the group. Instead, it didn’t look like any goals would be scored, so they bought time passing the ball about because Senegal was losing to Colombia. Are you happy about progressing by showing us such a pathetic match, team Japan? せなるーん via twitter.
Do you think that after this match, Japan’s teams are worthy of the name ‘Samurai Blue – or do you think all is fair love and war?