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Costa Rica bounce back to stun Japan

Keysher Fuller has scored with Costa Rica’s only shot on target to condemn Japan to a surprise 1-0 defeat at the World Cup.

November 28, 2022
By AAP
28 November 2022

Costa Rica showed real resilience to bounce back from their 7-0 thrashing by Spain to record a surprise 1-0 victory over Japan in Group E of the Qatar World Cup.

Keysher Fuller scored in the 81st minute for Costa Rica on Sunday, leaving both teams with three points after two games in the World Cup.

Fuller took advantage of a defensive error when Japan failed to clear their lines and then made a second mistake by playing him onside.

Fuller took deliberate aim from the edge of the area and his precise shot just made it into the net off the fingertips of Japan’s goalkeeper, Shuichi Gonda, who should have done better.

The match at Ahmad Bin Ali stadium was tactical and largely lacklustre, particularly in a first half that did not yield a single shot on goal. 

The second half was slightly better with Japan pressing throughout until Costa Rica broke through.

Costa Rica keeper Keylor Navas came up with several rapid-fire saves in the final minutes to preserve the victory.

Japan have one group game remaining against Spain, while Costa Rica will face Germany.

A victory would have all but wrapped up a place in the knockout stage for  Japan after the beat Germany 2-1 first off.

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