AFC Asian Cup: Japan cruise past Bahrain, Iran edge Syria on penalties

Japan secured a spot in the AFC Asian Cup quarterfinals with a 3-1 victory over Bahrain, highlighted by goals from Ritsu Doan, Takefusa Kubo, and Ayase Ueda.


Japan advanced to the AFC Asian Cup quarter­finals with a 3-1 win over Bahrain here on Wednesday, while Iran edged Syria 5-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw.


Goals from Ritsu Doan, Takefusa Kubo and Ayase Ueda helped Hajime Mori­yasu’s side outclass Bahrain, who had almost no chances except Ueda’s own goal after a goalline scramble.


Japan took the lead in the 31st minute when Seiya Maikuma’s shot from 25 yards hit the post and de­flected to Doan, who stroke home in the box.


Japan dou­bled the lead just four minutes into the second half. Kubo gained pos­session in front of the Bahrain box and passed to Ueda. Hazza Ali tried to tackle the striker but only steered the ball to Kubo, who slotted past goalkeep­er Lutfalla. Bahrain hardly had chances to threaten Ja­pan’s goal, but Ueda and Su­zuki’s collision caused an own goal when the striker attempted to head the ball off the goalline in the 64th minute. Kaoru Mito­ma came off the bench along with Takumi Minamino four minutes later to make his debut in Doha. — Xinhua