Thursday, 31 October 2019

FIFA U-17 World Cup Brazil 2019: USA earn first point in draw with Japan

USA v Japan - FIFA U-17 World Cup Brazil 2019

USA and Japan finished in a scoreless draw at the FIFA U-17 World Cup 2019 on Wednesday, with few clear-cut goal scoring chances afforded for either side. The result gives the Samurai Blue a three-point cushion in second place of Group D, while USA move into third by picking up their first point at Brazil 2019.

Stars and Stripes head coach Raphael Wicky sprung a pair of surprises on his opponents, opting to begin the match with star No10 Giovanni Reyna on the bench and to replace Damian Las with Chituru Odunze in goal. When Reyna subbed on in the 55th minute he energised the USA attack with a more direct approach, though in the end was kept off the scoresheet.

The Asian champions entered Estadio Kleber Andrade brimming with confidence following their comprehensive opening triumph against the Netherlands. Much like in that match, No9 Yamato Wakatsuki was their best performer. This time, though, there would be no goals. The USA defence proved adept at dealing with Japan's methodical offense.

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