0 vs. 0
JPN
GRE
00:52
And that is that. Japan were mostly poor and didn't really deserve a win here - Greece really put in a shift after going down to ten men and could have even won it themselves. Colombia have now qualified, so Japan may be facing a less motivated and possibly rotated team in their game, but Greece won't care - on thirty-eight minutes, they looked doomed. Now, they are very much alive. Thanks for reading.
90+1'
The ball appears to fall loose in the area for Honda, but Greece simply throw bodies in the way and hoof it clear. It looks like Japan will only be coming away with one point.
89'
Endo hammers one in now, but it's saved by the keeper who tips it away. Things are getting desperate now, but Japan can have no excuses if they can't find a way through here.
Greece Yellow card

Japan

Greece

87'
Holebas gets into a decent position for a cross, but decides to just leather it from a tight angle at Kawashima. It's strong and true, but the Japan keeper is behind it and keeps it out without too much concern.
85'
This is one-way traffic now, but the Greek defence remains firm. Japan need something special or a mistake here - they have been sorely lacking quality up front.
82'
Kagawa plays a nice ball which Honda dummies for Uchida, but his centre can't find anyone and is easily cleared.
Greece Substitution
80'
Greece have withdrawn to their own area. Japan are detaching the kitchen sink in preparation.
74'
Japan have a free-kick, but Kone is fouled and it passes without incident. A peculiar lack of urgency from the Blue Samurai here - they're running out of time now. This would be a huge missed opportunity were they to fail to win.
71'
And another huge chance for Japan! Papastathopoulos gets in a bit of a muddle under pressure from Endo, and Uchida pounces in the area as he takes a heavy touch but prods it wide. Japan will have to show the fabled 'character' if they are to win this, one suspects.
68'
How did Japan not score? Kagawa produces Japan's best moment of the match - the pass is obvious, everybody watching on TV and in the stadium must be screaming for it, but it's even more exquisite than you could imagine, finding Uchida's run perfectly. And the right-back's reply is just as good, cushioning it brilliantly across goal for Okubo at the back post, but he's having to sprint to get on the end of it, and in his haste, puts it over the bar. Huge moment.
64'
Japan break and Nagotomo escapes down the left with plenty to aim at, but his cross is rubbish - far too hard and even though it finds a Japan player in Honda, he can't control it before the Greek defence is upon him like a pack of wolves.
62'
Greece seem to attract criticism for the way they play, but they deserve credit for not withdrawing to sheer defence after going a man down. This is a really awful performance from Japan, however. They are not putting Greece under any meaningful pressure at all.
59'
Goodness me. Since the red card, paradoxically it's Greece who have had all the better chances. Theofanis Gekas gets up excellently to nod towards the bottom corner from a corner, but Kawashima gets across to shove it away.
Japan Substitution
56'
 
As you look towards the TV from your sofa, watching this dour 0-0 and contemplating your life, you may well wonder what time it is. Well, I'll tell you - it's Shinji time. It's Kagawa O'Clock. The Manchester United playmaker is on. Osako makes way.
Greece Yellow card

Japan

Greece

53'
Honda darts towards the area with menace on his mind, but Karagounis does well to anticipate it and does just enough to put him off his shot, which is tame and easily kept out.
51'
Endo delivers a decent ball to the back post, but it's just too far ahead for anyone to get on the end of. Still deadlocked.
50'
Japan have a free-kick in a dangerous area. Probably just too far away for anyone to consider the shot, but a chance to get the ball into the box at least.
49'
Endo makes his first contribution, attempting to feed Okazaki into space, but Sokratis Papastathopoulos is across to snuff out the danger.
46'
And we are underway. Japan make a change, surprisingly withdrawing their captain, Hasebe, for Endo.
12:02
The teams are back out. Will Greece go super-defensive? If they get a draw here and beat the Ivory Coast then it's probably likely that they'll qualify.
11:47
And that's that. That was, unfortunately, a desperately dull half, but surely even Greece can't hold out for an entire half with only ten men. Japan should, in theory, have exactly the right kind of players for this situation. They just need to show more of it.
Japan Substitution
43'
This has been pretty disappointing from Keisuke Honda so far. I know Shinji Kagawa has been bobbins for Manchester United, but surely he's worth bringing on for the second half to try and find a way to penetrate this Greek defence. That said, this game doesn't actually yet look any different to how it did before the red card.
Greece Substitution
40'
Also a big fan of Japan's completely coincidental Romania '98 look. Greece, predictably, haven't really done much since that Fetfatzidis effort. Japan still have quite a bit to do here.
38'
But Greece aren't done yet! Fetfatzidis has a fine effort, which Kawashima only just keeps out with a sprawling save. If Greece were defensive before, they will be hanging on for dear life now, but they almost nicked a goal there.
Greece Red card

Japan

Greece

36'
 
This game desperately needed something to turn it around - and now we have it. Katsouranis has been sent off! He fairly clatters Hasebe, an honest attempt for the ball and he was very close to it, but he earns a second yellow card and now Greece are looking doomed.
Greece Substitution
28'
Karnezis has made a bit of a mess of this free-kick from Honda, spilling it into danger, but he just about manages to recover in time before the Japan lurkers can pounce.
Greece Yellow card

Japan

Greece

25'
Japan look a bit sad. A far cry from the Confederations Cup when they seemed to lose every game 4-3. There's a desperate lack of end product, of cutting edge, or penetration, or whatever is the nomenclature de nos jours. Verticality?
22'
If a picture tells a thousand words, then this is probably going to be the match report for this game.
20'
A pair of efforts from Osako, the first is fairly weak but the second is decent, a 20-yard effort that whizzes wide of the post. A very even game in the opening twenty minutes.
18'
Funnily enough, when Greece get on top, the game starts to get a bit scrappy. It's become a bit bogged down in midfield now. Japan have a wide range of technical players to get something here, even without Kagawa, but they're clogging it a bit so far.
15'
Greece try to get into the Japanese box via Samaras, but he's quickly closed down after - surprise - wanting too many touches. This Greece side are entirely dependent on Kone and Samaras to produce something out of nowhere, and they only do so once every three or four games, if that.
13'
 
Makoto Hasebe goes in the book for bringing down Maniatis, as we have out first booking. Greece appear to have got themselves together a bit more now.
Japan Yellow card

Japan

Greece

10'
Greece are sitting surprisingly deep, but Pantagionos Kone, who was a bright spot against Colombia, goes on a solo run and tests Kawashima with a long-range effort. The keeper spills it, but can gather easily at the second time of asking.
7'
Keisuke Honda, who was a bit quiet against the Ivory Coast, attempts to slip in Yuya Osako, but Holebas is there again with an important challenge to deny him. Japan on top so far.
5'
Kostas Mitroglou has a good chance - he needs a good touch and produces it, but he also needs a good finish and doesn't. How Greece need him to find some form.
2'
Okubo has a decent effort right away, but it's blocked by Holebas. A promising start here in Natal.
1'
Solid national anthems. And we are underway.
22:45
And as a treat for me, Samaras starts again for Greece. If there are two things that I enjoy most in life, it is beards and Celtic players, so I have a soft spot for him. I expect him to score five or six goals today. It's the kind of game that Neil Lennon, one of the best young managers around at the moment, prepared him for.
23:55
We're getting very close to kick-off here. It's a team who can't defend versus a team who can't attack, really. It could be great, it could be terrible.
22:35
I'm sure most of you have just come from watching the England defeat to Uruguay, so why not catch your breath ahead of this game by reading the match report. What did you think about the performances by Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney?

A superb Luis Suarez double saw Uruguay beat England 2-1 in Sao Paulo and leave Roy Hodgson's men on the brink of World Cup elimination.

22:30
Here's a video for you previewing Greece vs Japan. With Colombia losing, a win would be an emormous boost in what is one of the most evenly balanced World Cup groups.

Watch the video World Cup preview - Japan v Greece on Yahoo Eurosport UK. A preview of the World Cup Group C clash between Japan and Greece.

22:25
JAPAN: Kawashima, Uchida, Honda, Nagatomo, Okazaki, Okubo, Konno, Yamaguchi, Hasebe, Osako, Yoshida. /// GREECE: Karnezis, Maniatis, Manolas, Samaras, Kone, Mitroglou, Torosidis, Fetfazidis, Sokratis, Cholevas, Katsouranis.
22:22
Greece and Japan both lost their opening games, but with Colombia defeating the Ivory Coast, both have a chance to redeem themselves with a victory here. A draw could be mutually-destructive of course, but both sides will be desperate for a win here. Even with Greece's reputation, this could be a good one.

Starting Line-ups

Japan
Greece
    • 1
      Kawashima
    • 5
      Nagatomo
    • 15
      Yasuyuki Konno
    • 22
      Yoshida
    • 2
      Uchida
    • 16
      Yamaguchi
    • 17
      Hasebe
    • 9
      Okazaki
    • 4
      Honda
    • 13
      Okubo
    • 18
      Osako
Team Manager:  Javier Aguirre
    • 21
      Fetfatzidis
    • 21
      Mitroglou
    • 7
      Samaras
    • 2
      Maniatis
    • 21
      Katsouranis
    • 21
      Kone
    • 15
      Torosidis
    • 4
      Manolas
    • 19
      Sokratis
    • 20
      Holebas
    • 1
      Karnezis
Team Manager:  Kostas Tsanas
Goalkeepers
GOALKEEPERS
Goalkeepers G SAV GC GK FC FS Y R PEN Mins
E. KawashimaDFP
0 4 0 8 0 0 0 0 0 90
Defenders
DEFENDERS
Defenders G GA SHO TA CLR COR FC FS Y R PEN Mins
Y. NagatomoDFP
0 0 1 0 1 2 0 1 0 0 0 90
M. YoshidaDFP
0 0 1 0 8 0 3 0 0 0 0 90
A. UchidaDFP
0 0 1 4 1 0 1 1 0 0 0 90
Yasuyuki KonnoDFP
0 0 0 2 1 0 3 0 0 0 0 90
Midfielders
MIDFIELDERS
Midfielders G GA SHO PAS FK COR FC FS Y R PEN Mins
S. OkazakiDFP
0 0 0 17 0 0 5 1 0 0 0 90
K. HondaDFP
0 0 1 64 2 3 2 5 0 0 0 90
Y. OkuboDFP
0 0 3 26 0 0 4 5 0 0 0 90
H. YamaguchiDFP
0 0 0 85 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 90
M. HasebeDFP
0 0 0 43 0 0 2 1 1 0 0 45
Forwards
FORWARDS
Forwards G GA SHO PAS FK COR FC FS Y R PEN Mins
Y. OsakoDFP
0 0 2 13 0 0 3 2 0 0 0 57
Goalkeepers
GOALKEEPERS
Goalkeepers G SAV GC GK FC FS Y R PEN Mins
O. KarnezisDFP
0 4 0 11 0 0 0 0 0 90
Defenders
DEFENDERS
Defenders G GA SHO TA CLR COR FC FS Y R PEN Mins
V. TorosidisDFP
0 0 2 1 7 0 2 1 1 0 0 90
SokratisDFP
0 0 0 0 9 0 2 1 0 0 0 90
J. HolebasDFP
0 0 1 1 3 1 4 1 0 0 0 90
K. ManolasDFP
0 0 0 2 4 0 0 2 0 0 0 90
Midfielders
MIDFIELDERS
Midfielders G GA SHO PAS FK COR FC FS Y R PEN Mins
G. ManiatisDFP
0 0 0 27 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 90
P. KoneDFP
0 0 2 11 0 1 2 3 0 0 0 81
K. KatsouranisDFP
0 0 0 14 0 0 4 0 0 1 0 38
Forwards
FORWARDS
Forwards G GA SHO PAS FK COR FC FS Y R PEN Mins
G. SamarasDFP
0 0 2 13 0 0 3 7 1 0 0 90
I. FetfatzidisDFP
0 0 0 7 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 42
K. MitroglouDFP
0 0 0 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 35
View comments (139)