Mon, 30 Nov, -0001
Liberia: Japan stormed into the final of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup as they downed Venezuela 4-1 at Estadio Edgardo Baltodano Briceño in Costa Rica on Monday.
Both teams were on a four-win streak before the match and now Japan became the first team to win five successive games at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup thanks to two goals in both sides of the tie.
Japan were dominating the possession and were playing according to their trademark rhythm until they were rewarded with their first goal through a low strike from 25 yards from Fuka Nagano on 13 minutes.
There was further disaster for Venezuela 20 minutes later as a free-kick from the sideline somehow flew through a packed area that connected with Nana Ichise who tapped it in.
There was further joy for the Japanese a few minutes after the interval as Rikako Kobayashi turned the ball in from close range thanks to a wonderful pass from Yui Hasegawa.
Japan never let the game finish without another one as captain Hina Sugita was fouled a few minutes after the hour mark and coolly converted her spot kick.
However it was the Venezuelans who scored the last goal as tournament top scorer Deyna Castellanos powered in a stoppage time header which was also Japan’s first conceded goal.
Japan have now advanced into their second FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup final in three editions.