Russia 2018 World Cup Qualifying: Australia 1-1 Japan

Australia failed to turn a dominant performance into victory as Japan held them to a 1-1 draw in Melbourne, Mile Jedinak cancelling out Genki Haraguchi.

  • Published:
24/7 Live - Subscribe to the Pulse Newsletter!

Australia failed to turn a dominant performance into victory as Japan held them to a 1-1 draw in Melbourne.

In a meeting of Group B's heavyweights in the Asian section of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup, Genki Haraguchi gave Japan an early lead, but went from hero to zero after the break, conceding a penalty from which Mile Jedinak levelled the scores.

The Socceroos had the vast majority of possession at the Etihad Stadium, but Ange Postecoglou's side were unable to attack with the purpose required to test their opponents for the vast majority of the game.

Australia remain unbeaten in the group with eight points from four games, with Japan unable to strike a blow to one of their main rivals for the two qualifying spots as they look to gather momentum back after their early loss to United Arab Emirates in the group.

Japan's slick counter-attack paid early dividends when Trent Sainsbury erred in Australia's attempts to play out from the back and Keisuke Honda toe-poked into the path of Haraguchi, who maintained his calm to slot home.

The hosts were the dominant side in terms of possession, but soporific with the ball and unable to hurt Japan, with the visitors' greater sharpness presenting Haraguchi and then Honda chances to extend the lead.

Jedinak's long-range free-kick drew the only save of meaning in the first half out of Shusaku Nishikawa as the Japanese defence stood firm and the workmanlike Tomi Juric and Apostolis Giannou lacked the craft to unlock them.

However, the visitors' composure deserted them early in the second half as Juric bustled into the penalty area before being clumsily felled by Haraguchi and Jedinak did the honours from 12 yards.

Postecoglou introduced Robbie Kruse, Tim Cahill and Mathew Leckie in a bid to freshen up his attack, but their forward forays remained half-paced for the most part.

Indeed Australia had Mat Ryan to thank for preserving a point when he plunged low to his right to keep out a firm header from Shinji Kagawa, maintaining their one-point advantage over Japan in the group.

Do you ever witness news or have a story that should be featured on Pulse Ghana?
Submit your stories, pictures and videos to us now via WhatsApp: +233507713497, Social Media @pulseghana: #PulseEyewitness & DM or Email: eyewitness@pulse.com.gh.

Recommended Articles

Recommended Videos





Top Articles

1 Video Arsene Wenger came to Ghana to buy me- Dong Borteybullet
2 Sporty Is Abhi of Kumkum Bhagya fame Barca fan?bullet
3 Amos Frimpong Kotoko skipper: My first salary could only buy a rice...bullet
4 English Premier League Christian Atsu ruled out of Manchester...bullet
5 Ghana@60 Anniversary Hearts to face Kotoko on December 24bullet
6 Black Stars Kwesi Appiah to meet with Abedi Pele over the...bullet
7 Run Energy Drink Twellium Industrial Company honour Asamoah...bullet
8 Football Mourinho delighted by "emotional" Ibrahimovic returnbullet
9 No FIFA World Cup Nii Lantey Vanderpuije says GFA are...bullet
10 'Fire Things' After Ebony's open invitation to Songo,...bullet

Top Videos

1 Video Andre Ayew’s screamer wins Premier League Goal for Octoberbullet
2 Video This sumptuous Ayew’s goal nominated for goal of the month awardbullet
3 Video Watch how France whipped Ghana 8-0 on Mondaybullet
4 Video Ghanaians will forever love Junior Agogo for this goalbullet
5 Video Highlights of former Ghana and Ajax midfielder who passed awaybullet
6 Video Watch Andre Ayew's brace against Tottenhambullet
7 Video Ghana beat Brazil to win historic U-20 World Cupbullet
8 Video Watch Thomas Partey's goal against Elchebullet
9 Video Ex-Manchester United defender shown red for...bullet
10 Video This how Egypt beat Congo to qualify ahead of Ghanabullet

Football