Nothing unexpected happened. Japan defeated Indonesia to finish Group D of the 2023 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asian Cup in second place. What is left is Korea’s final ranking in Group E. If Korea tops the group, Korea-Japan match will take place in the round of 16. There is a high possibility that the two strongest candidates and eternal rivals will face off early.
Japan, led by Coach Moriyasu Hajime, defeated Indonesia 3-1 by banking on multiple goals by Ayase Ueda of Feyenoord in the final Group D match held at Altumama Stadium in Doha, Qatar at 8:30 p.m. on Monday (Korea time). The Indonesian coach is Shin Tae-yong.
Japan, which led the team with Ueda’s first goal from a penalty kick in the first six minutes of the first half, secured the victory with Ueda’s additional goal in the seventh minute of the second half, which was assisted by Doan Ritz (Freiburg), and also scored an own goal against the opponent in the 43rd minute of the second half to solidify its win. Japan allowed a comeback goal in extra time, but the result was not affected.
As a result, Japan recorded six points (2 wins and one loss), and passed Group D ranking second after Iraq (3 wins and nine points). Indonesia, led by head coach Shin Tae-yong, is ranking third with three points (1 win and two losses). If Indonesia had won on the day, the ranking of Indonesia and Japan could have been reversed, but nothing unexpected happened. Japan had a ball occupancy rate of 71.2 percent, and it also led 14-3 in the number of shots fired.
As Japan ranked second in Group D without any major reversal, the first conditions for the Korea-Japan match to take place in the round of 16 teams have also been met. The remaining conditions will be whether Korea will rank No. 1 in Group E. If Korea passes the group stage as No. 1, the Korea-Japan match, which was expected to take place only in the final, will take place early on in the round of 16 teams.
As Japan failed to pass Group D as No. 1, chances are high that Korea and Japan will advance to the round of 16 match. Initially, Korea and Japan were considered strong contenders for the upcoming event, and prevailing view was that they would pass the group stage as No. 1 players in their respective groups. If Korea and Japan both passed the group stage as No. 1 players, there would be no chance to meet each other before the final depending on the tournament’s match. As both Korea and Japan were evaluated as champions, there was high expectation that the match between Korea and Japan could take place in the long-awaited final. It was the biggest box office hit at the Asian Cup.
However, as Japan suffered a shock loss of 1-2 to Iraq in the last two games, all of its pre-tournament expectations were wrong. Japan suffered a come-from-behind victory over Vietnam 4-2 in the first game, and lost its pride to Iraq. As Japan passed the tournament in second place instead of first place in Group D, there was a big variable in the tournament’s matches. The possibility that the match between Korea and Japan, which is the same for Korea but burdensome for Japan, will take place early in the round of 16 has increased.
The remaining conditions for the round of 16 match between Korea and Japan are Korea’s No. 1 ranking in Group E. This year’s tournament will have a showdown between No. 1 ranking in Group E and No. 2 ranking in Group D (Japan) according to a pre-organized list of matches. Korea is currently ranking second in Group E with the final match just around the corner, and depending on the results of the final match, Korea can rise to No. 1 ranking. Considering the final match in the group league, chances are high that Korea will pass the first place, namely the round of 16 match between Korea and Japan.
The final match of Group E will be held simultaneously at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday between Korea and Malaysia (Al-Zanop Stadium), and Jordan and Bahrain (Kalifa International Stadium). The middle ranking is Jordan, Korea (both four points) and Bahrain (three points). Korea is two goals behind Jordan in difference of gains and losses, and is now in second place. 헤라카지노주소
Malaysia, Korea’s final opponent, has already been eliminated after two consecutive losses. In the FIFA rankings, Korea ranks 23rd and Malaysia ranks 130th, showing a wide gap. Amid voices calling for the operation of rotation to erase warning variables, Korea’s power is considered to be far superior even if key players are eliminated in large numbers.