Curtis Anderson seals England's penalty win over Japan

Herbert Rhodes
October 19, 2017

Sancho was definitely a big miss for Steve Cooper, for the Borussia Dortmund winger can change the game in a matter of minutes, but it was George McEachran's uneventful performance in the midfield which hurt England more and allowed Japan to get back into the game in the second half.

He was only allowed to attend the meet on condition that he would return to his club after the preliminary round. Dortmund have asked that he heads back to Germany, which is obviously a disappointment in terms of the tournament.

"He loves playing for England and loves playing for this team in particular", England coach Steve Cooper said at the pre-match press conference here. I can only imagine Dortmund playing him in the first team and he would start.

"I was very impressed how the players played". We are looking forward to go to Goa.

Goalkeeper Anderson, who plays for Manchester City, stepping out to take a penalty moments after saving one was part of the plan, Cooper said. Appropriate that because minutes earlier, Japan coach Yoshiro Moriyama had left the stage with applause from the Japanese media ringing in his ears. If any of the boys left with any reason, may it be injuries, suspensions, club commitments. we will always be about a team and about a squad.

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"We have two targets: to do as well as we can in each tournament that we play and to ensure these players' long-term development", he added. While England enjoyed most of the possession and created more goal-scoring chances, Japan's resilience at the back meant the game was too close to call at certain junctures.

After coasting to a 6-1 victory over lowly Honduras, Japan were checked by France 1-2 with key players Keito Nakamura and Takefusa Kubo man-marked and their midfielders zonally choked.

Brewster, who later scored England's first penalty, had a weird outing - he consistently found himself in the right positions within the eighteen-yard box, but his wayward shooting symbolized England's night in front of the goal - indecisive and imprecise.

Whatever the outcome of Saturday's game, the England boss says his young players will have learned a lot from reaching the knockout stages of a World Cup.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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