WORLD CUP WATCH

Published September 24, 2022

DUSSELDORF: Japan’s Kaoru Mitoma (second L) shoots to score his side’s second goal during the international friendly against the United States at the Merkur Spiel-Arena on Friday. Mitoma’s 88th-minute goal sealed a deserved 2-0 victory for Japan as they continued their preparations for November’s World Cup in Qatar. Eintracht Frankfurt forward Daichi Kamada had punished a defensive lapse to give Japan the lead on 24 minutes and the comprehensive loss dealt a reality check to the United States in what was their penultimate game before the World Cup.—Reuters

ST POELTEN (Austria): Uruguay’s Rodrigo Bentancur (R) attempts to tackle Iran’s Mehdi Taremi during their international friendly at the NV Arena on Friday. In a game featuring two sides who will compete at this year’s World Cup, substitute Taremi scored the solitary goal in the 79th minute to give Carlos Queiroz a winning start on his return as Iran coach.—Reuters

GOYANG: South Korea’s Son Heung-Min (L) scores from a free-kick during the international friendly against Costa Rica at the Goyang Stadium on Friday. Tottenham Hotspur forward Son’s 85th-minute set piece past substitute goalkeeper Patrick Sequeira, minutes after Esteban Alvarado had been sent off for handling the ball outside the penalty area, earned South Korea a 2-2 draw with fellow World Cup qualifiers Costa Rica. Wolverhampton Wanderers forward Hwang Hee-chan put South Korea ahead with a left-footed strike in the 28th, only to see Jewison Bennette heading the equaliser in the 41st and then the go-ahead goal from close range in the 65th. Costa Rica came within 10 minutes of an upset, before Alvarado’s costly mistake — and Son’s ensuing goal — dashed their hopes.—Reuters

GOYANG: Cameroon’s Moumi Brice Ngamaleu (L) vies for the ball with Uzbekistan’s Khojiakbar Alijonov during their international friendly on Friday. World Cup-bound Cameroon were beaten 2-0 in the first of two warm-up internationals in South Korea this month. Russia-based duo Hojimat Erkinov and Oston Urunov scored either side of halftime to give Uzbekistan the win over the ‘Indomitable Lions’, who begin their World Cup campaign against Switzerland in November. Cameroon, who are also grouped with Brazil and Serbia at the finals in Qatar, will take on South Korea in another friendly in Seoul on Tuesday.—AFP

Published in Dawn, September 24th, 2022

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