The men’s Olympic football team opened and a very good Australian team surprised Argentina and won 2-0. In addition, the tie between Spain and Egypt, 0-0, completed the very tough Group C. While Brazil flourished in the first half against Germany: before 30 he was already winning 3 to 0, with 3 by Richarlison, but in the second half they almost tied it. The win of the day was on behalf of Mexico: 4 to 1 to France.
Argentina surpassed by Australian intensity
Argentina started its journey in the Olympic Games on the wrong foot and, like Spain, with which it shares favoritism in Group C, it was unable to successfully solve its Olympic debut after falling against Australia, in a duel that it faced with a man less in the second part.
Three minutes before the break Francisco Ortega was sent off for a double yellow card. By then he already had the score against.
He dominated the ball, but it was of no use to him. Australia was planted with a 4-4-2 pressing up and looking for, and finding, the counterattacks. It didn’t take long for it to hurt. Long ball to the back of the Albiceleste defense so that Joel King, left back, surprised from behind, rushing the baseline and serving the ball to Lachlan Wales to finish at pleasure at the far post. 0-1 in the 14th minute.
Argentina tried to react and Carlos Fernando Valenzuela had the best opportunity after a cut in the area, but the ball was taken by the central Souttar just before he sneaked into the goal. Danger that he did not recreate.
Meanwhile, Australia continued warning the counterattack and was able to score up to two times, but both plays were canceled by a just offside. In addition, Riley McGree was about to make one of the goals of the tournament at m.29 with a Chilean inside the area, but Ledesma managed to save her in two halves. Of course, a quarter of an hour later he would be the protagonist.
Ortega was sent off for a double yellow card in just three minutes. The first in a lateral foul and the second before the service of the same. The referee, the Serbian Srdan Jovanović, previously warned that he did not want to grab hold, but McGree and the Argentine defender got hooked and the referee decided to deliver justice with a yellow to each player.
Another hard blow from Argentina, this on the edge of the break, and did not recover. The game became tense in the second half, with up to five cautions, in a rhythm that benefited Australia; the less things will happen with the ball, the better.
And in this desperation and numerical advantage, he also had opportunities to increase his income earlier, but Ledesma took a shot from Arzani at the left post at m.47 and a point-blank shot from Caleb Watts at m.70; thus demonstrating the great reflexes that he has and that he wore in LaLiga Santander last season with Cádiz.
Finally, the final 0-2 came at m.80. Marco Tilio came out onto the pitch and not 30 seconds later, on the first ball he touched, he scored. Great cross shot stuck to the post that served to certify the Australian victory that makes the first day of Group C close as the first after the draw between Egypt and Spain (0-0).
0.- Argentina: Ledesma, De La Fuente (Herrera, m.62), Pérez, Medina, Ortega; Vera, Colombatto (Belmonte, m.78); Valenzuela (Ponce, m.46), Mac Allister (Payero, m.78), Barco (de La Vega, m.82); Gaich.
2.- Australia: Glover; Atkinson, Souttar, Deng, King; McGree (D’Agostino, m.79), Metcalfe, Genreau (Baccus, m.88); Wales (Watts, m.72), Duke and Arzani (Tilio, m.79).
Goals: 0-1, min 14: Wales. 0-2, min 80: Tilio.
Referee: Srdan Jovanović (Serbia) sent off Ortega (m.45 + 1 and m.45 + 3) for a double yellow and admonished Gaich (m.63), Medina (m.67) and Ponce (m.85) by Argentina, while admonished Duke (m.32), McGree (m.45 + 3), Atkinson (m.48), Metcalfe (m.50), Genreau (m.56), Souttar (m.86) and Watts (90 + 1) by Australia.
Spain could not with Egypt
Spain ran into this Thursday, in its Olympic debut in Sapporo, with a wall that demanded brilliance and spark to tear it down, and it was missing both against a team from Egypt (0-0) that, in addition, was used harshly on the Spanish footballers and that he could see two red cards for each stomping on Mingueza and Ceballos, the latter causing him to leave the field due to injury as a result of the entry.
No matter how favorite you are, a short tournament like this can get complicated from day one. The summary of the first part was: 0-0, a shot on goal, another on the post and two injured; worst impossible. Óscar Mingueza left the pitch after suffering muscle discomfort in the back of his left thigh in a race to cut a ball into space that Ahmed Yasser Rayyan was chasing.
While with Ceballos, the best of the initial 45 minutes and protagonist of the shot at the post with a good shot from the edge of the area, the controversy arrived. In a split duel, Taher Mohamed stepped on his left ankle on the inside and buckled. The referee, next to the play, did not appreciate anything punishable.
They called him from the VOR room to see the play and he did not see enough reason to show the red card to the Egyptian player. Yellow, while Ceballos smiled ironically lying outside the field of play while shaking his head. He left without a boot and without being able to put his foot down. His continuity in the Olympics depends on tests in the area when the inflammation goes down.
Two setbacks that also complicated Luis de la Fuente’s ability to react from the bench. With three changes, but only one window to make them. After 20 minutes of the second half in which there was no offensive reaction and in which the highlights were the entrances of Egypt, with another stomp on Pedri and a blow with Hegazy’s arm at the level of Mikel Oyarzabal’s face inside the area, to which the referee did not indicate anything, the technician shook the tree.
A pure forward like Rafa Mir and Bryan Gil stuck to the left wing to look for alternatives, in addition to the freshness of Carlos Soler in the center of the field, but it was not the day. As demonstrated at m.77 when Jordanian referee Adham Makhadmeh signaled a penalty on Miranda that ultimately turned out to be a foul on the edge of the area.
Spain tried to the end and was about to get a prize on the clearest occasion of the match. Minute 87 and Rafa Mir finished off a cross from Miranda inside the small area, unopposed, but it came out centered. It does not usually fail them, but the coin, except for the initial draw, did not fall on the side of Spain.
The draw, awaiting Argentina-Australia, can make next Sunday’s match against the Australians be treated as the first final of a tournament that does not wait for anyone, not even one of the favorites to win the gold.
0.- Egypt: Mohamed Elshenawy; Eraki (Fouad, m.89), El Wench, Hegazy ©, Galal; Fotouh, Ashour (Hamdy, m.62), Tawfik; Taher Mohamed (Ladel, m.62), Rayyan (Mohsen, m.62) and Sobhi (Mohamed, m.90 + 2).
0.- Spain: Unai Simon; Mingueza (Vallejo, m.20), Eric García, Pau Torres, Miranda; Mikel Merino (Carlos Soler, m.67), Ceballos © (Moncayola, m.43), Pedri; Asensio (Bryan Gil, m.67), Oyarzabal (Rafa Mir, m.67) and Dani Olmo.
Referee: Adham Makhadmeh (Jordan) admonished Fotouh (m.4), Taher Mohamed (m.43) and Hegazy (m.76) from Egypt.
Incidents: Opening match of the Olympic Games men’s soccer competition played at the Sapporo Dome. No viewers due to coronavirus restrictions.
Brazil was flourishing, they almost tied it, but ended up winning.
The Brazilian soccer team embarked on its path to revalidate the gold it won at the Rio Games with a clear and convincing 4-2 victory over Germany, in a match in which attacker Richarlison presented his candidacy for the title of great star of the Olympic tournament with a treble.
The match played this Thursday in Yokohama had little or nothing to do with the Olympic final that faced both teams five years ago in Maracanã. If then Brazil, led by Neymar, had to wait for the penalty shootout to defeat the Germans, tonight barely seven minutes had elapsed when the South Americans already dominated the scoreboard (1-0).
In fact, the South American team could have advanced a couple of minutes earlier in a brilliant counterattack led by Richarlison that Matheus Cunha failed to complete.
The one who did not miss was Richarlison who in minute did not miss an extraordinary pass in depth from Antony to establish the 1-0. And that the German goalkeeper Florian Müller stopped the English Everton player’s shot in the first instance, but Richarlison was more alive than anyone to pick up his own rebound and score.
A play that perfectly summed up what happened in the first forty-five minutes in which Brazil not only won the tactical game against Germany, but also in which the South American players beat their rivals in each individual match. Richarlison and company imposed their fastest speed against some permanently overwhelmed German defenders.
For Brazil, a simple and direct game was enough, with never more than three or four passes, not only to overcome the pressure line of the German team, but to leave their forwards completely alone against the rival goalkeeper.
An invitation to a win that Richarlison was not willing to miss, as he demonstrated in the 22nd minute after making it 2-0, culminating with a powerful header from a cross from the left by Guilherme Arana.
But even so the voracity of Richarlison was not appeased, eight minutes later he added his third goal (3-0) by solving a new counterattack with a precise shot.
Andre Jardine’s men were even able to extend their lead even further before reaching half-time, but Matheus Cunha watched as goalkeeper Florian Müller stopped him from a penalty shot in the first half extension time.
The ruling seemed to loosen the Brazilian team, who faced the start of the second half in a remarkably relaxed way, which Germany took advantage of to reduce the distance. But if the goal by Nadam Amiri, who made it 3-1 at 56 minutes, after first hooking a bounced ball in the front of the area, opened a door to hope for the German team, it was slammed shut for six more minutes late with the expulsion by double yellow card of midfielder Maximilian Arnold.
Circumstance with which Brazil seemed to end the match as evidenced by Richarlison’s departure from the field in the following minutes, who left his place on the pitch to Reinier.
The Brazilian team let go completely in the final minutes, allowing the Germans to reach just a goal (3-2) with seven minutes remaining thanks to a header from Ragnar Ache.
Although the victory of Brazil does not threaten this way, which once again made clear the difference between the two teams tonight with a goal from Paulinho, which he established in the extension time of the final 4-2.
4 – Brazil: Saints; Dani Alves, Nino, Diego Carlos, Arana; Bruno Guimaraes, Douglas Luiz; Antony (Paulinho, m.73), Claudinho (Malcom, m.65), Richarlison (Reinier, m.73) and Matheus Cunha.
2 – Germany: Müller; Henrichs, Pieper (Torunarigha, m.46), Uduokhai, Raum; Maier, Stach (Schlotterbeck, m.80) Arnold, Richter (Ache, m.68), Krause (Löwen, m.68) and Amiri (Teuchert, m.73).
Goals: 1-0, m.7: Richarlison. 2-0, m.22: Richarlison. 3-0, m.30: Richarlison. 3-1, m.56: Amiri. 3-2, m.83: Ache. 4-2, m.94: Paulinho.
Referee: Ivan Barton (ESA). He sent off Germany’s Maximilian Arnold with a double yellow card in the 63rd minute. He also showed a yellow card to Douglas Luiz for Brazil; and Pieper, Arnold, Stach and Henrichs for Germany.
Incidents: Match corresponding to the first day of group D of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games football tournament held at the Yokohama International Stadium. No spectators.
In Group B New Zealand beat South Korea 1-0 and Honduras fell 1-0 with Romania.
In Group A, Mexico beat France 4-1 and local Japan beat South Africa 1-0.
In Group D, Ivory Coast beat Saudi Arabia 2-1.