Japan eliminated

Japan are Knocked Out of the World Cup on Penalties by Croatia

Japan, the World Cup’s tidiest team, made a bit of a mess of things when it came to penalties and it might take some time to cleanse the heartache from the system.

As reported by Daily Mail, they have made plenty of friends by cleaning up the dressing rooms after games and leaving origami models behind but they crumbled under the pressure of the first shootout of the tournament.

In fairness, they were up against experts. Croatia won twice on penalties on their way to the final in Russia, four years ago, and here they were clinical with goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic the hero.

Livakovic made three saves from the spot and Mario Pasalic scored the decisive penalty to send Zlatko Dalic’s team into the last eight.

Japan go out at this stage for the fourth time. They have never been further. But they could not repeat the epic results against Germany and Spain in the group stage.

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