Japan soccer defeat North Korea to extend its winning streak

Japan soccer defeated North Korea to extend its winning streak to three games in the second round of the North American World Cup in Asia.

Hajime Moriyasu’s Japan defended an early goal from Ao Tanaka (Düsseldorf) to earn a 1-0 victory over North Korea in the third Group B match of the 2026 FIFA World Cup Asia Second Qualifying Round at the Tokyo National Stadium at 7:23 p.m. ET on Sunday.

The victory was a welcome change of pace for Japan, who were coming off a disappointing quarterfinal exit at the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) 2023 Asian Cup last month.

Japan, who defeated Myanmar (5-0) and Syria (5-0) in November last year, maintained their lead at the top of Group B with their third straight win.

Japan quickly took the lead with a goal from Tanaka just two minutes into the game.

Tanaka collected a ground ball pass from Doan Ritz 안전놀이터 (Freiburg) and calmly struck with his right foot to rattle the North Korean net before the North Korean defense could settle down.

North Korea pushed for an equalizer through Han Kwang-sung, but were unable to find the Japan goal. The North Koreans also received three cautions for rough fouls.

Japan will be traveling to North Korea for the first time in 13 years. They will play their fourth match against North Korea at the Kim Il Sung Stadium in Pyongyang on June 26.

1 comment on “Japan soccer defeat North Korea to extend its winning streak”

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