Japan kicks off World Cup qualification with Myanmar win

Published 10:40 a.m. ET Sept. 10, 2019
CLOSESEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Japan started on the road to the 2022 World Cup by beating Myanmar 2-0 in Yangon on Tuesday.A spectacular strike from outside the area by Shoya Nakajima after 16 minutes put Japan in control. Takumi Minamino ensured Japan led 2-0 by halftime.Japan reached the second round of the 2018 World Cup and is looking for a seventh successive finals appearance.It moved into second place in Group F of Asia qualifying, three points behind leader Tajikistan. The Central Asian team, yet to appear at a World Cup, recorded a second successive win, defeating Mongolia 1-0.Iran kicked off its attempt to reach the global stage for a fifth time with a 2-0 win in Hong Kong thanks to goals from Sardar Azmoun and Karim Ansarifard.Singapore went to the top of Group D after topping Palestine 2-1.Only the top team from the eight groups and the four best second-placed finishers progress to the next stage.___More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_SportsCopyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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