Germany suffered a shock defeat at the hands of Japan on Wednesday, as two Bundesliga forwards entered the fray to strike late on.
Japan staged a sensational fightback to deal Germany a shock 2-1 defeat in their World Cup opener as Bundesliga players Ritsu Doan and Takuma Asano came off the bench to stun the four-time winners.
Germany made headlines by covering their mouths in a pre-match protest against FIFA’s decision to ban Manuel Neuer from wearing the OneLove armband, and they looked set to make a positive start in Group E when Ilkay Gundogan converted a first-half penalty.
Hansi Flick’s side then squandered several golden opportunities to put the game to bed before Freiburg forward Doan made them pay from a rebound 15 minutes from time.
With Germany chasing a winner, there was to be one final twist as Asano raced onto a long ball before firing beyond Neuer, leaving Die Mannschaft under huge pressure ahead of Sunday’s meeting with Spain.
Germany player ratings
- Manuel Neuer (5) – Did not have to make a save until the 72nd minute, but it was a great save. Made another good stop minutes later but he parried the ball straight to Doan for the equaliser.
- Niklas Sule (6) – Started at right-back but tucked inside and generally played as the right-sided centre-back in a three. He looked solid in this role but did not offer much going forward.
- Antonio Rudiger (5.5) – Rudiger was a solid presence at the back, often cleaning up loose balls and mistakes from Schlotterbeck in the first half. But his marking was awful for Germany’s second.
- Nicolas Schlotterbeck (5) – He struggled to deal with the pace of Japan’s right-hand side and gave away the ball a few times.
- David Raum (7) – Was pushed further forward throughout the match and this allowed the pace Ito to get in behind on numerous occasions. However, he did bring a serious attacking threat down the German left and won them a penalty 31 minutes in.
- Joshua Kimich (6) – Produced an excellent ball to Raum before he won the penalty.
- Ilkay Gundogan (7) – Scored from the spot to put Germany in front.
- Serge Gnabry (5) – Was often wasteful in possession, taking on shots in poor positions when a pass was the better option.
- Thomas Muller (6.5) – Linked play well with a number of key passes but failed to test the Japan keeper himself.
- Jamal Musiala (7) – A bright showing from the teenager who caused Japan issues with his quick feet and ability to dance between players.
- Kai Havertz (5.5) – Pressed well from the front but did not offer much of a goalscoring threat.
- Jonas Hoffman (5)
- Leon Goretzka (5)
- Mario Gotze (4)
- Niclas Füllkrug (4)
- Youssoufa Moukoko (N/A)
Japan player ratings
- Shūichi Gonda (3.5)
- Hiroki Sakai (5)
- Kou Itakura (6.5)
- Maya Yoshida (5)
- Yuto Nagatomo (5.5)
- Ao Tanaka (5)
- Wataru Endo (4.5)
- Junya Ito (6)
- Daichi Kamada (5)
- Takefusa Kubo (5)
- Daizen Maeda (4.5)
- Takehiro Tomiyasu (5)
- Kaoru Mitoma (6)
- Takuma Asano (6)
- Ritsu Doan (6.5)
- Takumi Minamino (5)