Takuma Asano was Japan’s hero in their FIFA World Cup 2022 opener on Wednesday. The 28-year-old scored a late winner against Germany to hand Hans Flick and co a shocking 2-1 defeat at the Khalifa International Stadium. 

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In the first competitive meeting between the two teams, Ilkay Gündogan gave Germany a first-half lead with a penalty. Ritsu Doan, who plays for German team Freiburg, equalised in the 76th minute before Asano sealed the game. 

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Asano plays, who represents German team Bochum, sprinted clear of Nico Schlotterbeck and beat Neuer from a narrow angle in the 83rd.

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Here is Asano’s game by numbers:

33 minutes played

9 touches

5 touches in opp. box

1 chance created

1 final third entry

1 shot

1 goal

Japanese manager Hajime Moriyasu, after the game, said that German league Bundesliga has helped in the development of their players. 

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“We are very grateful and respectful to that. Many German people have contributed and helped us in Japanese football. Today Japan won. But Japan wants to continue learning from Germany and the world,” he said. 

“I believe it’s a historic moment, a historic victory. If I think about the development of Japanese soccer, thinking of players, for them this was a big surprise,” he said. 

“They’re fighting in a very strong, tough, prestigious league. They’ve been building up their strength. In that context we believe that those divisions (Bundesliga and second division) have been contributing to the development of Japanese players,” Moriyasu said. “I’m very grateful for that.”