Japan stun US to win first ever women's World Cup title

Japan stun US to win first ever women's World Cup title

Japan defeated the United States 3-1 in a penalty shootout after the matched finished 2-2 at the end of extra-time Sunday to be crowned women's world champions for the first time in the country's history, dpa reported.

A second-half goal from substitute Alex Morgan looked to have given the Olympic champions victory in regulation time in Frankfurt but a late equalizer from Aya Minama sent the World Cup final into extra-time.

Abby Wambach put the US ahead once again in the 104th minute but Homare Sawa levelled for Japan with three minutes of extra-time remaining.

There was still time for Azusa Iwashimizu to be sent off for a professional foul before the game went into a penalty shootout where Japan goalkeeper Ayumi Kaihori saved two penalties and Saki Kumagai netted the all-important spot-kick to give Norio Sasaki's side a shock win.

"It's not possible to explain, sometimes they go in, sometimes not," said a disappointed US coach Pia Sundhage after seeing her team miss four of their penalties. "We should have used the chances we had."

The US went into the game at the Commerzbank Arena in Frankfurt as strong favourites having twice been crowned world champions, in 1991 and 1999, while Japan were contesting their first ever World Cup final.

The Americans started the stronger and almost went ahead in the opening minute when Lauren Cheney broke into the penalty area from the left. The chance came to nothing, however, as the striker looked to beat Kaihori from a tight angle instead of passing to the better positioned Abby Wambach.

The pressure continued to come almost exclusively from the US and Sundhage's side almost went ahead on the 29th minute but Wambach saw her fiercely struck shot from the edge of the area come back off the crossbar.

Japan's best chance of the half fell to Kozue Ando two minutes later when she was put through by Shinobu Ohno but the midfielder fired weakly at Hope Solo in the US goal.

Cheney, who was replaced by Morgan because of injury at half-time, had one more opportunity to put the US ahead in the 34 minute but headed over.

The first opportunity of the second half also fell to the US in the 49th minute when Heather O'Reilly's cross was met by the outstretched foot of Morgan, who saw her shot hit the base of the near post before being cleared by Japan captain Sawa.

Japan continued to struggle to find their feet in the game and the US eventually deservedly broke the deadlock in the 69th minute when a long ball from her own half by Megan Rapinoe found Morgan, who fired home from 16 metres to make it 1-0.

But just as the US looked to be cruising to victory, Japan netted an unexpected equalizer in the 80th minute when Alexandra Krieger in the American defence failed to clear her lines and Miyama took full advantage, poking the ball home from close range to make it 1-1.

Neither side managed to conjure a winner in the remaining 10 minutes, sending the tie into extra-time where Wambach's header in the 104th minute looked to have secured the win once again until Sawa made it 2-2 with just over three minutes left.

There was still time for Iwashimizu to receive a straight red from referee Bibiana Steinhaus before the dramatic penalty shootout where the US managed just one successful spot-kick from four attempts to give Kumagai the chance to write footballing history for Japan.

Trade turnover between Turkey, Tajikistan slides
Trade turnover between Turkey, Tajikistan slides
Turkish export of fruit, vegetables from January through May 2020 spikes
Turkish export of fruit, vegetables from January through May 2020 spikes
Turkey reveals volume of diesel transshipped through country ports
Turkey reveals volume of diesel transshipped through country ports
Loading Bars
Latest
Kulevi oil terminal holds annual inspection of all safety equipment
Assets of Azerbaijan’s AccessBank surge
Malaysia reports 19 new coronavirus cases, one new death
Kazakh-German oil extracting JV to buy spare parts via tender
Singapore heading for record unemployment in 2020
Uzbekistan sells state shares in Shahrisabz Star Hotel
Trade turnover between Turkey, Tajikistan slides
Iran reports COVID-19 data for June 5
Azerbaijan explains rules for shopping prior to weekends, amid hard quarantine
Uzbekistan's exporters, Azerbaijan's entrepreneurs to hold online business forum
Kazakh Gas Refinery to buy pumps via tender
Turkish export of fruit, vegetables from January through May 2020 spikes
Indonesia reports 703 new coronavirus infections, 49 new deaths
Crude market to be in deficit also in August
Turkey reveals volume of diesel transshipped through country ports
European Investment Bank talks recent projects in Georgia
Kazakhstan considering approaches to unify some social payments
Azerbaijan has all prospects for economic growth in post-pandemic period
Data on cargo shipment via Turkish Bartin port disclosed
President of Association of Turkish Travel Agencies talks partnership with Uzbekistan
Road infrastructure of Tashkent to be upgraded
Azerbaijan's ADY Container boosts railroad transit volumes
Turkmenistan reaches new agreements with Russia's Tatarstan
Cargo transshipment through Turkish Iskenderun port unveiled
Steel export from Turkey to int'l markets drops
Kazakhstan-Spain trade down twofold in 1Q2020
Russia's coronavirus infections near 450,000
Turkey discloses info on cargo shipment via its Bandirma port
Turkish cement export to int'l markets on decline
Turkey reveals data on cargo movement through its Gemlik port
Kazakhstan's Air Astana modifying its planes to transport cargo
Azerbaijani-Chinese joint venture to expand export geography
Russia says OPEC+ meeting to be held on Saturday
Singapore reports 261 new coronavirus cases, smallest rise in two months
Prices of Azerbaijani oil change
Kazakhstan's KazMunayGas to give up its subsidiaries to shareholder
Turkmenistan, Italian Eni discuss co-op in fuel & energy sector
Kazakh national postal service operator opens tender for vehicle repair
Some museums, exhibition halls in Baku on lockdown due to tightened quarantine
Minister: Georgia's economy to start growing from 2021
Kazakhstan eyes turning its household waste into electricity
Georgian Nectar company plans to increase juice exports
Enrique Mora: EU ready to support Azerbaijan in eliminating COVID-19 consequences (PHOTO)
US commits funds to support Georgia’s COVID-19 response
Georgia joins world leaders in global vaccine summit
Russian MFA: Optimism remains over settlement of Karabakh conflict
Georgia reports 4 new COVID-19 confirmed cases
French Europcar Mobility Group has exclusive representative company in Georgia
New power plants in Iran's Bushehr Province to help boost shrimp production
Azercell “Telegram Bot” – your new guide in digital world!
CISCO talks 'Smart City' system benefits in Azerbaijan
Google remains most used search engine in Azerbaijan, Yandex follows
Uzbek gov't sells state share in Kafolat Insurance to Uzbek IT company
Gold prices grow in Azerbaijan on June 5
Azerbaijani currency rates for June 5
Amount of payment cards in Azerbaijan grows
Armenia violates ceasefire with Azerbaijan 25 times
Uzbekistan reports 91 new COVID-19 cases
Federal Foreign Office: Germany supports efforts for peaceful solution of Karabakh conflict
Turkmen farmers hope for rich potato harvest in current season
Oil edges higher as traders eye producer talks on extending supply cuts
Thailand reports one new coronavirus cases, no new deaths
France, Germany back European cloud computing 'moonshot'
Oman to establish investment body to manage sovereign wealth funds
Portugese PM announces plan to ease economic blow from COVID-19
Sweden to lift domestic travel restrictions, but remain cautious
New York's Cuomo, concerned about COVID-19 spread, asks protesters to get tested
Germany will require all petrol stations to provide electric car charging
Somalia set to resume domestic flights
Around 5.2 pct of Spanish population infected by coronavirus: study
Albanian parliament OKs 650-mln-euro Eurobond
Jordan to open most economic sectors, further ease movement restrictions
Vaccines group raises $8.8 billion for immunisation plans for poor countries
OPEC+ has encouraging signs of rising conformity, says Barkindo
Eni creates two new business groups
Barkindo: 2020 oil demand to return to levels before 2014-2016 market downturn
IFC co-ops with Uzbekistan on planning of future projects
20-odd airlines to resume flights to and from Cyprus
India pledges 15 million USD to international vaccine alliance
Baku expected to hold European Championships in Men's and Women’s Artistic Gymnastics in late 2020
UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Turkmenistan discuss joint projects
Demand from banks at foreign exchange auction decreases in Azerbaijan
Georgia takes steps to foster development of local businesses
Turkey plans to resume flights with Azerbaijan soon
WHO mission to visit Turkmenistan
Cashless transactions in Azerbaijan on rise from Mar. through Apr. 2020
GNERC reveals market share of Georgian mobile operators
Representatives of diplomatic corps in Azerbaijan may work on weekends
GNERC reveals number of mobile subscribers in Georgia
Online payments grow in Kazakhstan
Global expenditures of oil & gas exploration to decline
COVID-related economic consequences to test Kazakhstan insurers' resilience
TABIB: Decision, rules related to international flights to be announced soon in Azerbaijan
Turkey's export of electrical goods from Jan. through May 2020 drops
11 insurers increase payment of insurance claims in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijani Operational Headquarters: Domestic flights may be renewed in coming days
Android OS ranks first in Azerbaijani market albeit with lower percentage
Uzbekistan's Ministry of Energy, EBRD developing low carbon energy strategy
Georgia implements new agricultural project
Azerbaijan's Elektrogas LLC unveils plans on manufacturing combi devices
All news