Doha [Qatar], November 23 (ANI): Germany were leading Japan 1-0 at half-time after Ilkay Gundogan scored via penalty kick in the group E match at the Khalifa International Stadium on Wednesday.
Japan goalkeeper Shuichi Gonda failed to prevent a goal in the 32nd minute of the match. Gundogan netted the ball straight into the goal through a penalty kick to give Germany 1-0 lead.
The four-time FIFA champions wasted no time and came out all guns blazing as they went deep inside the Japanese box in the second minute of the game and looked threatening from the beginning.
Daizen Maeda challenged German Antonio Rudiger to dribble the ball past him but the centre-back was alert and cut the Japanese' run short.
Maeda was in the reckoning once again in the 8th minute as he made a brilliant run to get to the ball perfectly and score, only to be called off-side.
There was a constant struggle between the sides for possession. Japan also had advantage for some time.
Germany came close to scoring in the 16th minute with a superb corner kick from Joshua Walter Kimmich that was headed just a few inches wide by Rudiger.
A free-kick was given to Germany as Thomas Muller was brought down by Takefusa Kubo in the 18th minute but the Germans failed to score off it.
Gundogan troubled the Japan team with his brilliant football skill as he managed to constantly find vacant spaces in the field.
The German finally scored via a penalty to give Germany a one-goal lead over Japan.
Japanese players seemed a bit demotivated after trailing and faltered with the ball, giving possession to the German players.
Germany almost took a 2-0 lead in the closing minutes of the game after Kai Havertz found the back of the net but was called off-side.
An electric first half then came to an end with Germany leading with a goal. (ANI)