World Cup Group H match report Japan v Poland 28 June 2018

1:22                                            Get the latest news from day 14 of the World Cup in Russia including an update on the health of Diego Maradona

1:22 Get the latest news from day 14 of the World Cup in Russia including an update on the health of Diego Maradona

If Japan can put in a similar showing against a struggling Poland, they have an excellent chance of at least securing the point they need.

Unfortunately, that proved to be the final effort at goal from both sides in the half as Japan were happy to sit back, knowing a point will see them progress.

Once Colombia had scored in Samara, Japan knew it had done enough to advance even though it was losing late in its match. Nishino's squad will also be motivated by the knowledge that the manager could call on anyone for Monday's match, however, and the fact that Japan has already exceeded expectations by reaching the knockout round could work in its favor.

"I decided that I was going to rely on the other match's result", he told reporters. Keisuke Honda has been involved in 7 of Japan's last 10 World Cup goals.

Finally at the hour mark, Poland were able to break the deadlock, with centre-back Jan Bednarek getting on the end of a long free kick and poking home an unlikely goal. I forced my players to do what I said.

The Japanese played out goalless draw at halftime and were looking like they were heading for the exit doors.

When it came down to the fair play tiebreaker, Senegal had accrued two more yellow cards in the group stage than its Asian counterpart.

Belgium fans fear Harry Kane ahead of England World Cup clash
Jose Pekerman has refused to entertain the prospect of seeing Colombia´s stuttering World Cup campaign end at the first hurdle. The Three Lions booked their place in the last 16 by defeating Tunisia and Panama in their opening two group matches.

The "Samurai Blue" needed a draw to definitely advance to the knockout rounds after they beat Colombia and drew with Senegal in the previous two games, reversing low expectations at the start of the tournament.

Still, Japanese fans were left toasting goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima, who in the first half made a spectacular save that denied Kamil Grosicki's header.

"It was for us more important for us to get into the next round than to win the match, " Japan midfielder Gotoku Sakai said.

Then, with nine minutes remaining, Tomoaki Makino - in an attempt to intercept another unsafe cross by Grosicki - could only send the ball towards his own goal but Kawashima reacted well to make the save.

With 20 minutes to play, Poland launched a quick counter attack and Robert Lewandowski was handed a chance to kill the game off, but blasted his shot over the bar.

However, it's Akira Nishino's side who will play the winners of England's group in Rostov-on-Don on July 2 due to their superior fair play record.

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