The Japan team arrived at Qatar 2022 with the same ‘cliché’ as always:more beautiful than effective. In Hajime Moriyasu’s list of 26 there was ‘overbooking’ of midfielders/wingers (Doan, Mitoma, Kubo, Ito, Kamada…), but a ‘9’ with a ‘fang’ was missing. In fact, the absence of Kyogo Furuhashi, Celtic’s prolific striker, was criticized, and a lot.
The first part against Germany seemed to confirm the worst omens. Japan ‘disappeared’ in attack after the disallowed goal at 7′ and was left at the mercy of Germany, that he was able to leave with a larger score than 1-0 with which he reached the break.
Nevertheless, Moriyasu orchestrated a revolution in the break that ended up certifying the victory of Japan (1-2), the second big surprise of Qatar 2022. A serious warning for Spain ahead of the third day of Group F.
But let’s go back to Germany. The interventionism of the Japanese coachwho won the battle against Flick on the blackboard, it was decisive. Moriyasu, in between, he removed Kubo and brought in the limping Tomiyasu to play with a defense of three. A decision that improved the start from behind and allowed Japan to return to German soil.
The German Bernd Schuster, resigned, valued the victory of Japan in ‘World Goal’: “Germany had a hard time adapting to the three center backs and the higher pressure. The second part was from Japan. I think it was a deserved victory, although it pains me to say it.”
Germany had a hard time adapting to the three centrals and the higher pressure. I think it was a deserved win, though it pains me to say it.
It was still 1-0 and Moriyasu threw courage with an almost suicidal approach. At 57 ‘he retired Maeda and Nagatomo to put in Mitoma and Asano, at 71’ he introduced Doan for Tanaka and at 74 ‘he put Minamino on the ‘green’ for Sakai.
He could have done the ‘harakiri’, but it turned out well. Goals by Doan (75′) and Asano (83′), two of Moriyasu’s substitutions, gave victory to a Japan that, now unchanged, ended up defending Germany’s last rushes with six attacking players.
The 1-5-4-1 he ended up with was the most ‘liar’. Two extremes (Ito and Mitoma) ended up on the sides, escorted, yes, by Itakura, Yoshida and Tomiyasu. Endo, for his part, held a midfield made up of Doan (winger), Kamada (playing midfielder) and Minamino (forward). Asano was left alone in point.