Japan’s bundesliga pros shinji kagawa and yuya osako spoiled colombia’s start to the soccer world cup in russia for bayern star james rodriguez.
The favored sudamericans, who were outnumbered for almost 90 minutes, lost 2-1 (1-1) to the clever asians in saransk. Midfielder carlos sanchez was sent off in the third minute of the game, and the stricken james was not substituted until almost an hour into the match.
For japan, borussia dortmund’s kagawa scored in the fifth minute from a penalty kick and osako (73rd minute) from a penalty kick.) from relegation 1. FC koln, who will play for werder bremen next season. For the colombians, who had long been convincing in their fight, 40.842 spectators before the break james substitute juan quintero (39.) to.
"The red card was fatal, it made life very difficult for us. Japan did well and took good advantage of the situation," said colombia’s argentine coach jose pekerman on ZDF: "the japanese did more and controlled the game better. We became a bit tired in the second half and lost the rhythm."
Colombia experienced a horror start in group H. The favorites not only had to do without the ailing rodriguez, the top scorer at the 2014 world cup in brazil with six goals, in the starting lineup – after just three minutes they were down to nine field players. Sanchez was shown the first red card of the tournament after throwing himself into a shot by kagawa and preventing a goal-scoring opportunity against the law. Playmaker kagawa safely converts the penalty kick.
In the hectic early phase, colombia’s captain radamel falcao had a chance to equalize on his world cup debut (12.), takashi inui missed a good opportunity to 2:0 (15.) for japan. The asians fielded four germany legionnaires from the start in kagawa, osako, genki haraguchi (dusseldorf) and captain makoto hasebe (frankfurt). With a superior number of players, japan had a clear advantage in midfield, but colombia reacted well in a kind of 4-4-1 formation and tried to put falcao in scene.
But a directly converted free kick by quintero led to a deserved 1-1 draw. Japan’s keeper eiji kawashima complained about the goal, but goal-line technology clearly proved that the ball was behind the line. All in all, colombia with ten players exerted more pressure than japan with a full lineup. Four years ago, the two teams, each competing in their sixth world cup, met in the group stage. Colombia qualified for the eighth finals after a 4-1 win, while japan was eliminated in the preliminary round.
To the cheers of thousands of colombian fans, national hero james came on in the 59th minute. Minute on the turf. The 26-year-old had recently complained of muscular problems, but fitted in well in the encounter. The japanese, however, had the better chances and were rewarded by attacker osako with the renewed lead by a header after a corner. James did not use his best opportunity to equalize (78).).