AFC Asian Cup 2023FootballInternational

Japan fight back to beat Vietnam 4-2

DOHA: Japan fought back to beat Vietnam 4-2 in their Asian Cup Group D opener in a thrilling encounter on Sunday at the Al Thumama Stadium.

Five goals were scored in the first half and Japan’s star midfielder Takumi Minamino grabbed a brace.

Japan, four-times champions who last won the Asian Cup in 2011, were shocked into action when Vietnam took a 2-1 lead before the Samurai Blue cut their south-east Asian opponents down to size with two goals just before halftime.

“I know people in Japan wanted to see a game where we overcome our opponents with great power, but opening games in tournaments are always difficult and that’s what we saw today,” Japan coach Hajime Moriyasu told reporters.

“When we lost the lead in the first half the players were very calm, they knew they had the whole 90 minutes to play for the win. They managed to do that in the end of the first half.”

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