FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup 2018
Second-half goals see Japan into semis
17 Aug 2018
Three second-half goals powered Japan to a 3-1 victory over Germany in the quarter-finals of the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup France 2018 in Vannes on Friday evening.
Despite large parts of the first half being fairly even at the Stade de la Rabine, it was Japan that looked more of a threat going forward, with Riko Ueki unable to convert one of her three good opportunities in the Germany box. A scorer of a hat-trick against Paraguay in their last match, Saori Takarada also missed the target with a headed effort on 37 minutes.
Though Germany showed more urgency in their play after the break, it was the Young Nadeshiko that took the lead just before the hour mark with a finely-worked goal. Hinata Miyazawa’s cross-field ball found Jun Endo on the left side of the Germany box. She neatly side-stepped a sliding Sophia Kleinherne before beating goalkeeper Vanessa Fischer with a curling finish.
The East Asians then doubled their lead on 70 minutes when Ueki finally found the back of the net. From close range, she steered a shot off the inside of the post and into the net after taking an excellent through ball from Takarada for her fourth goal of the tournament. Three minutes later, Takarada got on the scoresheet for the fourth time at this competition when she directed home Nanami Kitamura’s cross from the left for 3-0.
Though Janina Minge struck a late consolation for the Germans, it was Japan that booked their ticket in Monday’s semi-final, where they will meet England, who defeated the Netherlands earlier on Friday.