Japan beats Australia 2-0 to qualify for World Cup

Japan Today -- Mar 25
Japan qualified for a seventh straight World Cup by beating Australia 2-0 Thursday and ended the Socceroos’ chances of automatic qualification.

The result in Sydney also qualified Saudi Arabia from Group B.

Japan has 21 points in the group.

Australia remains in contention for a playoff spot in third place. The Aussies face a playoff against the third-place team from Group A and a possible final game against South American opposition.

Substitute Kaoru Mitoma scored two late goals for Japan after Takumi Minamino came close on five occasions.

Mitomo came on in the 84th minute and scored in 89th after a pull back from Miki Yamane. His low shot then bobbled under Australia goalkeeper Mat Ryan in injury time. ...continue reading