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Belgium 3-2 Japan: Nacer Chadli’s 94th-minute winner completes a sensational comeback for Belgium as they defeat Japan

After a goalless first half, Japan struck twice in seven minutes following the interval to take full control of a gripping last-16 tie in Rostov-on-Don on Monday.

Genki Haraguchi and Takashi Inui scored stunners as Japan looked set to reach the first World Cup quarter-final in their history.

But, instead, Belgium became the first team to come from two goals down to win in a World Cup knockout game since 1970 and will now face five-time winners Brazil on Friday.

Jan Vertonghen’s looping header somehow beat goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima and Belgium’s aerial power started to tell when Marouane Fellaini thumped home Eden Hazard’s brilliant left-wing cross.

Keisuke Honda almost beat Thibaut Courtois with a free-kick in injury time but a clinical Belgium counter-attack, which ended in Thomas Meunier setting up Chadli for a simple finish, broke
Japanese hearts.

MATCH FACTS AND STATS

BELGIUM: (3-4-3) Courtois; Alderweireld, Kompany, Vertonghen; Meunier, De Bruyne, Witsel, Carrasco (Chadli 65); Mertens (Fellaini 65), Lukaku, Hazard

SUBS NOT USED: Casteels (GK), Mignolet (GK); Batshuayi, Boyata, Dembele, Dendoncker, Hazard, Januzaj, Tielemans, Vermaelen

GOALS: Vertonghen (69); Fellaini (74); Chadli (94)

BOOKINGS: None

COACH: Roberto Martinez

JAPAN: (4-2-3-1) Kawashima; H. Sakai, Yoshida, Shoji, Nagatomo; Hasebe, Shibasaki (Yamaguchi 81); Haraguchi (Honda 81), Kagawa, Inui; Osako

SUBS NOT USED: Higashiguchi (GK), Nakamura (GK); Endo, Makino, Muto, Okazaki, Oshima, G. Sakai, Ueda, Usami

GOALS: Haraguchi (48); Inui (52)

BOOKINGS: Shibasaki (40)

COACH: Akira Nishino

REFEREE: Malang Diedhiou (Senegal)

VENUE: Rostov Arena.

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