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FIFA World Cup 2022

Japan’s shock victory over Germany in Qatar on Wednesday

After Japan’s unexpected triumph over Germany on Wednesday in Qatar, there were late-night celebrations and proposals for a public holiday to honor the Samurai Blue’s historic achievement in their 2022 World Cup opener.

At Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, Takuma Asano fired Japan’s winning goal into the roof of the net as time wound down. Japan, competing in their seventh consecutive World Cup, had struggled in the opening period.

The 2-1 comeback triumph helped supporters over a certain age forget about another pivotal game that took place in Doha nearly three decades before. There, Japan came only minutes from earning a spot in their first World Cup, but their opponents, Iraq, scored an equalizer in stoppage time to prevent them from going to USA 1994.

The triumph on Wednesday triggered spontaneous celebrations at Shibuya’s renowned scramble crossing and calls for the country’s prime minister, Fumio Kishida, to follow Saudi Arabia’s lead and declare a public holiday.

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