Aya Miyama continued to excel in the second half. She distributed well, kept herself open for passes, and most impressively made a free kick goal with little effort. 19 year old substitution Iwabuchi showed why she’s a rising star. In Japan they call her the next Lionel Messi of women’s soccer. Whenever she touched the ball the fans “awed” and “oohed.” Her dribbling run into traffic and subsequent foul right outside the penalty area set up the Mimaya foul kick and goal.
The continual possession by Japan put a stranglehold on New Zealand. They never had a chance. Only one strike on goal the entire goal. The New Zealand substitution at 61′ for Gregorius of Wilkinson gave them a few opportunities, but nothing very dangerous.
All in all, Japan should be happy with their play. They possessed and got to play their game. They need to work on finishing when in front of the goal. The score easily could have been 5 to 1 instead of 2 to 1.