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Japan secured a famous start to their 2018 FIFA World Cup campaign as they shocked 10-man Colombia 2-1 at the Mordovia Arena in Saransk, Russia, on Tuesday.
Shinji Kagawa put Japan ahead in the sixth minute after Carlos Sanchez was dismissed for a deliberate handball in the box, but a clever low free-kick from Juan Quintero saw Colombia draw level ahead of the break.
Japan came out after half-time with much more intent to make their man advantage count, and Yuya Osako headed the winner with 17 minutes remaining.
The result puts Japan to the top of Group H, although that could change based on the outcome of Poland against Senegal later on Tuesday at Spartak Stadium. Meanwhile, it leaves Colombia playing catch-up in the race for the knockout rounds.
Carlos Sanchez’s Moment of Madness Puts Colombia’s World Cup in Jeopardy
No fan wants to see a defensive howler from their side at a World Cup and especially not two inside the first three minutes of the entire campaign.
Tottenham Hotspur’s Davinson Sanchez was culpable for Colombia’s calamitous start as he let a high ball bounce and then was outmuscled by Osako.
Match of the Day @BBCMOTD
Davinson Sanchez was a little off the pace today.
👉 https://t.co/fQkGE9hyyx #COLJPN #bbcworldcup https://t.co/3RQU49H3NO
But his namesake, Carlos, then upped the ante after David Ospina had saved well from Osaka, sticking out his hand to stop Kagawa’s follow-up effort.
Per the Times‘ Gabriele Marcotti, it was a moment of madness fr