FOOTBALL NEWS

26/03/2013 16:21, Report by Nick Coppack

Kagawa nets in loss

Shinji Kagawa scored in Japan's World Cup qualifier on Tuesday but couldn't prevent his team falling to a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Jordan.

Japan, who had previously taken 13 points from five group matches, missed the opportunity to become the first side to qualify for the 2014 finals (outside of hosts Brazil).

A point or better would have sealed a fifth consecutive appearance at the World Cup. Instead, Japan got nothing from a pulsating game at the King Abdullah Stadium.

Kagawa was reportedly heavily involved in Japan's attacking play, but his 69th-minute strike, a tidy finish applied to a bouncing ball eight yards from goal, came only after Jordan had gone 2-0 up thanks to strikes from Khalil Bani Ateyah and Ahmad Ibrahim.

Two minutes later, Yasuhito Endo had a golden chance to secure the point Japan required to qualify but missed from the penalty spot.

More: Reds in international action | Cleverley rates England's Reds core

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