NAKHON RATCHASIMA, THAILAND – Kaoru Morioka scored twice as Japan earned a dramatic 5-5 draw on Sunday in its FIFA Futsal World Cup Group C match against Portugal.
Trailing 3-0 in the ninth minute, Japan got back into the game and went into the break trailing the Portuguese 5-2.
Morioka netted for Japan in the 11th minute, while Portugal pulled one back a minute later. Portugal made it 5-1 in the 18th minute, but never scored again. Shota Hoshi scored Japan’s second in the 19th minute.
With roughly eight minutes left to play, Japan scored three times in the span of four minutes. Wataru Kitahara scored in the 32nd, Morioka added his second a minute later and Katsutoshi Henmi equalized in the 36th.
“We were nervous and felt a lot of responsibility before this match,” said Japan coach Miguel Rodrigo, whose men lost their opener 5-1 to Brazil. “People in Japan were saying that we could make history by winning this game or getting a draw. The way we played in the second half was the real Japan.”