Spain was stunned by the goal of Ritsu Doan that provoked moments of terror. It was minute 47. And three later (m. 50), Japan attacked from the right wing to serve a cross that passed through the small area of ​​a treeless Unai Simón. The Basque goalkeeper did not reach the ball that was lost over the bottom line, a prologue to the defeat that almost sent him home.

    But at that moment the left leg of Kaoru Mitoma to return the ball to the heart of the small area where Ao Tanaka appeared to get the 2-1 that placed Luis Enrique’s team on the brink of the abyss.

    That play then needed almost three minutes for the VAR, after checking it on several occasions, to give the Japanese goal legality. A goal that, curiously, has led to the elimination of Germany, whose thrashing of Costa Rica has been useless. He needed a goal from Spain to sneak into the round of 16. A bit that did not arrive.

    “Pablo has shown me a photo that must be faked or manipulated. It cannot be that this photo is true”

    Luis Enrique, Spain coach

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    “Pablo has shown me a photo that must have been faked or manipulated,” said the Asturian coach, referring to Pablo García Cuervo, the federation’s director of communication. “It can’t be that that photo is true. I already saw that something was happening when I saw that the VAR took so long & rdquor ;, Luis Enrique has acknowledged, hurt by the bad image of his team.

    “We have fantastic technology, I trust the criteria of the VAR. If the ball had come out, he would have told us,” he commented. Hajime Moriyasuthe Japanese coach, who has achieved the feat of getting his team into the round of 16.