Olympics Men's football: Japan shock Spain, win 1-0

Posted By:
Yuki Otsu
Glasgow, Jul 27: Favourites to win gold, European and World champions Spain were shocked by Japan as Yuki Otsu scored the only goal in their Group D clash at London Olympics played at Hampden Park in Glasgow, Scotland.

London Olympics 2012 Specials

Spain deserved more hammering as their passing rythm failed to click and things got even worse when Inigo Martinez was sent off for bringing down Kensuke Nagai during the first half.

It was the first time Japan beat the World and European champions. This upset is the repeat of the 1996 Olympics games in Atlanta when the mighty Brazil were beaten by Japan.

Despite the likes of Juan Mata, Jordi Alba and a host of world class youngsters, the Spaniards, who managed 65 percent possession, were forced backwards on many occasions.

Poor defending cost them in the 34th minute when Takahiro Oghihara swung in a curling ball from the corner which was met by Otsu off Martin Montoya and slammed a low shot past Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea.

It got even worse for La Roja when Martinez was shown red for a tackle on Nagai just outside the box. The first half ended with Spain going down by a goal and a man.

The Reds continued to dominate possession but were blank in front goal, lacking creativity and looked shaky in defence. Japan could have won comfortably but Nagai and Hotaru Yamaguchi missed golden opportunities.

At stoppage time, De Gea denied Nagai when everyone expected him to finish in a one-on-one situation while Yagamuchi blazed a shot high and wide.

The reigning champions got a taste of their own medicine and despite showing their dominance and style, the Japanese got the better of them.

OneIndia News

Story first published: Friday, July 27, 2012, 11:26 [IST]
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