Saturday, 18 May 2019

Japan stun Iran 3-0 to reach Asian Cup final

Al Ain, Yuya Osako scored twice in 11 second-half minutes to help send four-times champions Japan into the final of the Asian Cup with a 3-0 victory over tournament favourites Iran on Monday.

Osako headed the first home in the 56th minute and added his second from the penalty spot to help set up a date with either hosts the United Arab Emirates or Qatar, in Friday's final, set to be played in Abu Dhabi.

Genki Haraguchi added a gloss to the scoreline with a powerful run and shot in stoppage time at the end of the match but the contest was already long decided.

Carlos Queiroz's Iran had been the form team of the tournament but their dreams of ending a 43-year wait for a fourth continental title were left in tatters by the clinical Japanese.

Roared on by a noisy majority of the crowd, the Iranians had enjoyed the better of a competitive, if goalless, first half but were completely deflated by Osako's twin strikes and never looked like fighting their way back into the match.

Source: Saudi Press Agency

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