While there’s delight for Argentina at securing a point, there’s only frustration for Japan. The 2011 champions struggled to create chances and failed to play with enough speed or intensity. It’s a worrying result for them before games against Scotland and England. They’ll need a big improvement if they’re to qualify from Group D, which is currently topped by England after their win over Scotland yesterday. Thanks for reading and emailing. Bye.
Full-time: Argentina 0-0 Japan
It’s all over. Argentina have their first ever point at a World Cup and are celebrating like they’ve just become champions. There are emotional scenes from their exhausted players.
90 min+1: There will be four added minutes and Japan almost score in the first of them following a mix-up in the Argentina defence, only for Correa to push Hasegawa’s close-range effort away.
86 min: Stabile sends the free-kick into the area, but Coronel’s header bounces harmlessly wide.
85 min: Iwabuchi’s booked for tugging back the impressive Banini.
82 min: Jaimes’s deflected shot runs through to Yamashita, who earns herself a second mention in this MBM.
79 min: Argentina make their final change, Coronel on for Benitez.
77 min: Argentina make their second change: Larroquette replaces Bonsegundo.
76 min: This will be over soon. I’m never forgiving Argentina for this.
73 min: Bonsegundo breaks into the Japan area, but her tame shot goes straight at Yamashita, who’s earned her first mention in this MBM.
72 min: Cometti is in the wars again. She’s down after being caught by Sugasawa.
69 min: This really wouldn’t be a great result for Japan. They could do with a win before facing England and Scotland, both of whom will expect to beat this limited Argentina side.
65 min: Argentina have an attack! Inevitably it’s Banini who creates the danger, lolloping down the left and finding Sole Jaimes, who cuts inside and sees a shot blocked by Minami.
64 min: Argentina make their first change, Santana on for Bravo, who makes a very slow exit from the pitch. They’re already wasting time.
61 min: Nakajima cuts inside and tries to slip a pass through to Sugita. It’s overhit, though, allowing Correa to smother.
57 min: Japan make their second change, Iwabuchi on for Yokoyama.
56 min: Japan attack down the right, Nakajima charging down the right and pulling a ball back into the area. Sugita cleverly steps over it, fooling the Argentinian defenders, but Hasegawa disappointingly screws her shot wide from 12 yards.
51 min: Sameshima skips round Bonseundo far too easily on the left and scoots into the Argentina box, only for Gomez to deny her with a sliding challenge.
50 min: Yokoyama suddenly wakes everyone up with a dipping piledriver from 30 yards. Correa plunges down to her right to make the save, but she does so unconvincingly, only succeeding in pushing the ball out to Sugasawa. The striker runs on to the rebound – but she only manages to screw it over the bar from close range. Japan should lead.
48 min: There’s little sign of any extra intensity from Japan yet.
Half-time: Argentina 0-0 Japan
Nothing has happened. See you in 15 minutes.
45 min+2: Sugita picks up a yellow card for catching Banini with a stray arm to the face. A more pedantic referee might have sent her off for that, though Banini did milk it for all it was worth.
44 min: This has not been a good half. Japan look like they have no idea how to break Argentina down. They’ve barely created anything.
42 min: Hope for Edward Thomas! “It’s on Fox Sports 1,” Raimond Skrupsis says.
38 min: Shimizu picks up a yellow for clattering into Banini from behind. Banini stays down for a while and needs some attention from the physio. A little frustration’s creeping into Japan.
37 min: “Can’t find this on TV in the USA (also, I’m at work), so let me know: Does either performance so far cause concern for an England fan?” Edward Thomas says. “And how do you think Scotland will fare against both (I’m hoping for a Scotland upset myself).”
I imagine England wouldn’t see too much to fear so far, while Scotland would feel pretty confident about their chances as well. That said I was covering the tennis yesterday, so I didn’t see the England v Scotland game.
33 min: Japan are looking to get the ball to Hasegawa at every opportunity, but Argentina have recognised that ploy and are working to shut off the supply line. The underdogs have been organised so far. It’s not making for a great spectacle, but this Pulisian approach could bring them a positive approach.
29 min: Japan take the corner short and make a hot mess of it. That was a complete waste of time.
28 min: For all their pretty football Japan do look quite toothless. They have a corner on the right, though, Barroso conceding it rather needlessly.
25 min: Gomez charges into space down the right but she gets a nosebleed and kicks the ball at no one in particular. How odd. Japan counter and a promising move ends with Miura firing over from 20 yards.
23 min: “In what has been a solid World Cup so far, my heart wants to see the Japanese women further the excitement surrounding the global tournament by regaining their glory days through unorthodox and sensational football!” OB Jato says. “Their manager’s freestyle-encouraging tactics can do very well once the team gets on a collective roll, which can be sustained till the very end considering the short length of the tournament. Today has the potential to be the beginning of something very special. Go on, gals, give us an unexpected treat.”
20 min: We’ve got ourselves a stoppage, with Sugasawa receiving treatment for an arm problem on the side of the pitch. She should be fine to continue. Argentina’s Cometti is also in the wars.
13 min: The pattern is set, Japan probing, Argentina sitting. Argentina aren’t using the ball very well.
10 min: Another chance for Japan, Sugasawa finding space at the far post, but the striker can only head straight at Correa. The goalkeeper makes an easy save.
9 min: Japan press and open Argentina up when Miura wins a 50-50 on the edge of the area, forcing the ball through to the unmarked Nakajima. The winger has plenty of space but she rushes her shot and the ball dribbles harmlessly wide. With more composure she could have rolled a simple pass across to Sugasawa, who was all alone in the middle.
6 min: It’s been a tight start, though Japan are dominating possession.
5 min: Hasegawa, who’s made a good start on the left, dribbles into the Argentina area and for a moment Japan look like they’re in business. Yet Argentina manage to crowd the winger out and the move dies a speedy death.
3 min: Hasegawa produces a sublime piece of skill, lobbing the ball over Bravo’s head in midfield, but she can’t make any real progress.
Peep! Argentina, in their famous light blue and white stripes, get the game underway. Japan are in a darker shade of blue.
The anthems are done. There’s a bright, positive atmosphere at the Parc Des Princes on a sunny afternoon in Paris. The stadium’s not full, but there’s a good crowd.
Argentina: Correa; Gomez, Barroso, Cometti, Stabile; Banini, Bravo, Benitez, Mayorga, Bonsegundo; Sole Jaimes.
Japan: Yamashita; Shimizu, Kumagai, Minami, Sameshima; Nakajima, Sugita, Miura, Hasegawa; Yokoyama, Sugasawa.
Referee: Stephanie Frappart (France).
Hello. World champions in 2011, this time not much is expected from Japan. Asako Takakura’s goalshy side are not as strong as when they won the tournament in unforgettable style eight years ago and are quite low down the list when it comes to tipping potential winners, especially as it seems their plan is to peak for the Tokyo Olympics next year. Wouldn’t want to show too much too soon.
All the same qualification for the knockout stages is achievable. England are expected to finish top of Group D, especially after opening with a win over Scotland in Nice yesterday, but Japan will feel they have enough to claim second spot. A good start would do them the world of good. Argentina, making their third appearance at a World Cup, have had little preparation and could be there for the taking. Maybe Japan could warm up for the Olympics by sticking in a few goals here. Or perhaps Argentina have a few surprises in store.
Kick-off: 5pm BST, 6pm CET.