Japan beat Vietnam 1-0 to reach Asian Cup semi-finals

Press Association Sport 22:20 24/01/2019
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Southampton defender Maya Yoshida captained Japan to a 1-0 victory over Vietnam to secure a place in the semi-finals of the Asian Cup.

Yoshida looked to have given the Samurai Blue the lead after 24 minutes in Al Maktoum when he headed home from a corner.

However, the goal was ruled out following a review by the Video Assistant Referee, being used in the tournament for the first time, and it was decided the ball had gone in off his hand.

On 57 minutes, VAR was called upon again after Vietnam goalkeeper Bui Tien Dung was judged to have brought down Ritsu Doan, with the Groningen midfielder getting up to convert the resulting penalty.

In Thursday’s second quarter-final, Iran beat China 3-0 at the Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium, where Nottingham Forest forward Karim Ansarifard came off the bench to wrap things up in stoppage time.

Brighton winger Alireza Jahanbakhsh was again in the starting XI for Iran, who went ahead after 18 minutes through Mehdi Taremi.

Sardar Azmoun doubled Iran’s lead after 31 minutes when he rounded the China goalkeeper, and a check from the VAR ruling there was no offside.

Ansarifard, sent on for the closing stages, added a third with a low shot from the edge of the penalty area.

Iran, three-time tournament winners, will now play four-time champions Japan on January 28 for a place in the final.

Provided by Press Association Sport

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