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1 vs 3
June 24, 2010 7:30 PM BST
Royal Bafokeng Stadium, Rustenburg
Referee:‬ Jerome Damon (RSA)‎
81′ J. Tomasson
90′ +5
HONDA. It's just over the baaaar... and the referee blows for full time! It's been a stunning victory for a Japanese side who will be heading through to the round of 16 for the FIRST TIME EVER and playing Paraguay when they get there. Demark were truly awful tonight for all intents and purposes, and at full time here in Rustenburg, it's Japan 3, Denmark 1. Stay with us at Goal.com for a full match analysis, reactions and player ratings.
90′ +4
Free-kick down the left here for Japan, do they have time for one last attack in the alst minute of added time?
90′ +1
And that's Endo gone off now to a standing ovation. What a game he's had. Junichi Inamoto comes on for the Japanese number 7.
Two from set pieces and one from open play. We must remind ourselves how poorly the Danes are performing tonight, but the Blue Samurai look like they have it all here - pace, composure, first touch, final ball... lets hope we see a lot more of this in the round of 16, folks.
Substitution Y. Ōkubo Yasuyuki Konno
IT'S 3-1 JAPAN! OKAZAKI WITH THE FINISH, BUT HONDA WITH A BEAUTIFUL ASSIST! Honda beat two defenders before pulling it back for his colleague who thanked him for the assist before going off to celebrate. Absolutely superb.
Goal Shinji Okazaki
Okubo with the shoooooot.. and it's straight at Sorensen. Honda is furious at him at the back post.
Japan just wasted a corner kick there, and it looks like the Asian side might be losing breath here. There's not been anything dazzling in the last 10 minutes or so form Honda and his buddies - they can't afford to sit back now though, the Danes might still have something left...
It really looks like Tomasson is hurt badly. Denmark have made three substitutions though, so he must limp on. Perhaps a header could break the all time record if he can't use his legs?
Missed Penalty J. Tomasson
It's straight at the keeper.. AND THE REBOUND IS IN! 2-1 Japan still, and it looks like Tomasson's hurt his thigh in the process of tucking in that save...
Goal J. Tomasson
It's a penalty! Agger's been felled in the box - gets straight up and hand it to Tomasson, who needs one more goal to match the top scorer of all time for Denmark.
Honda is fouled by C. Poulsen just near the half-way line. It's taken short...
Substitution Daisuke Matsui Shinji Okazaki
My word. Japan are just having a laugh now at the front of their attack as Honda just links up wonderfully with anyone and everyone. The Danes look COMPLETELY out of their depth as this point - it's almost like they think they're playing a friendly. There's absolutely no urgency around the Scandanavians at all.
Some great work from Rommedahl down the right sees a ball come in to the box and it's TOMASSON WHO SCUFFS IT! What a waste - he should have scored from that distance.
Some Danish possession now as ERIKSEN sends in a first-timer. Well struck, but just wide of the mark.
We've just heard that Cameroon has equalised against the Netherlands via a Samuel Eto'o penalty. Just as that came in, Bendtner recieved a yellow card for more roughhousing with the defenders.
Yellow Card Nicklas Bendtner
The youngest player at the World Cup, Ajax's Christian Eriksen has just taken to the pitch in place of Kahlenberg. Olsen's either going for a pace injection or he knows his team are well beaten and he wants to let the youngster get some play-time before they head back to Europe...
Substitution Thomas Kahlenberg Christian Eriksen
Denmark are really letting this one get away from them. They're giving the ball away far too easily and just not taking their chances. It doesn't help that Bendtner looks like he'd rather be in his bed either...
Another Danish free-kiiiiiiiiiiick.. Agger strikes it well, but it's easy enough for the Japanese custodian to palm down and start a new attack.
Denmark build-up well there before Kahlenberg whoops one in from distance. He struck it sweetly and it troubled Kawashima, but the goalie had enough behind it to see it parried.
Here comes Soren Larsen in place of Kroldrop. A striker for a defender... all or nothing I guess at this point for Olsen's boys.
Substitution Per Billeskov Kroldrup Soren Larsen
Nagatomo bounded forward gracefully from full-back there, really immersing himself in the attack. The final ball was a tad poor though as it sailed over the bar and the defender heads back to his post.
A great ball in from the right sees three Danes line up for it... but Bendtner, who was in a prime position to poke it in just refused to attack it! He's really flopping in this one...
Now Denmark have their own free-kick. Bendtner hits iiit.... straight into the wall. Just awful there from the Arsenal man, who hasn't imposed himself on the game whatsoever so far.
SORENSEN! Just cannot hold on to the ball! The free-kick almost beat the keeper once again as he was caught flat footed for the second time before fumbling the grab. It'll be shoot on site from now on for the Asian side I'd think.
Silly foul there by Christian Poulsen on Honda sees him end up in the book.
Yellow Card Christian Poulsen
A great ball up to Honda sees the forward hold it up well before drilling one across goal. It was a great idea, but his intended target was just a yard of the mark in connecting. Great start from the Samuari.
Denmark were sent out incredibly quickly after the break. Some choice words from Morten Olsen methinks... Denmak get us kicked off once again.
45′ +3
And the ref's called it for half-time. Two absolutely stunning, world-class free-kicks have awarded an aggressive Japanese side a two goal advantage at the break. What a game this has turned out to be. Half time in Rustenburg: it's Japan 2, Denmark nil.
45′ +2
Matsui, Honda, Hasebe... they're working it beautifully down the right here with some great little triangles... and Hasebe's been caught offside. A little too slick for their own good there.
45′ +1
Two minutes of added time.
Denmark won a free-kick of their own there and it was a lovely piece of training-ground magic! Rommedahl and C. Poulsen made it look like Tomasson would take it, but the Juve man snuck off with it and belted it straight at goal. It was on target, but he was leaning back as he hit it and the 'keeper collected easily.
Say what you want about Asian sides being poor at World Cups, Japan are all over the Danes here, really showing that they're a side to be taken seriously on a global stage.
He's not as lucky this time as the ball smacks straight off the wall. We can't possibly have a third stupendous free-kick... can we?
And what's this... another Japanese free-kick in Honda territory...
We've had news that there's been a goal in Cape Town. Robin van Persie has scored for the Netherlands, which secures their qualification as it stands and a last 16 match against Slovakia.
It truly has gone belly up for Denmark so far. They played wonderfully against Cameroon, but they still needed a win to go through going into this game. They haven't had the best of starts and it's tough to see them coming back from this...
34-year-old Martin Jorgensen has been hooked not much more than 30 minutes into the game. Jacob Poulsen takes his place in midfield. Morten Olsen's clearly not happy with his choice of players....
Substitution Martin Jorgensen Jakob Poulsen
And Japan are on the prowl again! Matsui is the one who zips forward this time as he thinks better of beating 3 defenders and passes it back to Honda to begin looking for another way through...
It's Yasuhito Endo that takes it this time.. AND IT'S IN! ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL FREE-KICK THAT BENDS RIGHT AROUND THE WALL! Two free-kicks... two goals. Superb. 2-0 Japan.
Goal Yasuhito Endō
It looks like Kroldrop has been booked now for a foul on the edge of his own box. Honda stands over it again...
Yellow Card Per Billeskov Kroldrup
A disappointing delivery from Per Kroldrup there after Denmark won a free-kick on the half-way line.
It's worth mentioning that the referee has just handed a second Japanese player a yellow card for time wasting. Doesn't he realise we're only half-way through the first half?
Yellow Card Yuto Nagatomo
Denmark are enjoying the majority of possession at the moment, and it's certain that they're trying to find a way through. The Blue Samurai are moving around well though, keeping up with the Danish pace.
C Poulsen just sent in a wonderful ball for an onrushing Tomasson, but the Feyenoord striker just could not stretch far enough to nudge the ball in to the net.
Lars Jacobesen won the Danes a free kick there after some good pressure. The ball swung in was a decent one, but Japan did well to clear.
Japan win back possession after kick-off and Matsui heads off towards goal with intent. They look like they want more do the Japanese!
HONDAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA! Japan won a free kick from an extreme distance. The Russia-based forward waltzed up to the ball in a Ronaldo-esque fashion and experty beats Sorenson who was caught flat footed! Japan lead 1-0!
Goal Keisuke Honda
TOMASSOOOOOON... what a run down the left there! He tried to go across the 'keeper as he cut in and his shit just shaved the post on it's way out!
Japan won a free kick down the right flank there, but Per Kroldrup deal with it well but it comes back IIIIIIN OKUBOOOO... Great save from Sorensen! Japan are turning up the heat here!
Yellow Card Yasuhito Endō
Japan looked like they might be in for a nasty surprise as Poulsen went down on the edge of the box. The ref says nothing doing, but the Danes are really moving the ball around well here.
Denmark seem to be the more dangerous side out of the traps. Rommedahl has already shown his pace, but it looks like the Japanese are wise to it.
Some nice build-up there from the Danes as Christian Poulsen links up well with the forwards. The final strike is poor from the Juve man though and it goes over the bar for a goal kick.
Japan have forced a free kick out wide on the right in the Danish half. Yasuhito Endo is the one to whip it in... and it's easily cleared by the Danes.
And we're underway with Japan kicking from right to left in their blue shirts, while the Danes are draped in red and white.
LARSEN! Off the bar! Finally a Dane with a purpose! What a strike that was!
The teams are now on the pitch. We'll have the national anthems in few moments, then it's down to action in Rustenburg!
Meanwhile, Japan coach Takeshi Honda, needing only a draw to progress has stuck with the team that lost 1-0 to the Netherlands in their second group game. Line-up: Kawashima; Abe, Nakazawa, Tulio, Komano, Nagatomo, Okubo, Endo, Hasebe, Matsui, Honda.
Denmark coach Morten Olsen is without star defender Simon Kjaer this evening for their World Cup Group E match Royal Bafokeng Stadium and replaces him with former Everton defender Per Kroldrup. The Danes need to win to progress to the second round and Thomas Kahlenberg will come in to replace Jesper Gronkjaer. Line-up: Sorensen; Poulsen, Agger, Kroldrup, Jacobsen, Rommedahl, Poulsen, Jorgensen, Kahlenberg, Tomasson, Bendtner.
Hello and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE commentary coverage of tonight's World Cup clash between Denmark and Japan. The Danes and the Samurai have both impressed so far, but can they pull it out when a place in the final 16 depends on it? Lets hope so! Line-ups coming soon!