Japan qualified for a seventh successive World Cup after beating Australia 2-0 in Sydney. The result also qualified Saudi Arabia from Asia Group B.

Kaoru Mitoma’s late double secured Japan’s qualification for a seventh straight World Cup finals yesterday as the Samurai Blue beat Australia 2-0 in Sydney to ensure Saudi Arabia also qualified for the finals in Qatar.

Mitoma replaced Takumi Minamino in the 84th minute and claimed a quick-fire brace that guaranteed Hajime Moriyasu’s side a top-two finish in Group B of Asia’s preliminaries and sealed Saudi Arabia’s World Cup spot.

The Australians cannot finish higher than third and will face the third-place finisher in Group A in a playoff, with the winners taking on the fifth-best South American side for a berth at the finals.

Saudi Arabia, who played China in Sharjah later yesterday, has amassed 19 points and are now certain to finish no lower than second. 

Qualified Teams for Qatar 2022

Hosts: Qatar

Europe: Belgium, Croatia, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Netherlands, Serbia, Spain,Switzerland.

South America: Argentina, Brazil.

Asia: Iran, South Korea, Japan, Saudi Arabia.

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