International Friendly: Japan 0-2 Bulgaria
By Football News
Bulgaria cruised to a routine 2-0 win over Japan at the Toyota Stadium on Thursday.
Bulgaria had lost just once in their four previous games coming into the match and the visitors took the lead after just three minutes.
Stanislav Manolev lined up a free-kick from 30 yards that swerved in the air, but should have been kept out by home keeper Eiji Kawashima, whose attempted punch only saw the ball fly into the net.
Japan suffered a shock defeat in their last outing, losing 2-0 to Jordan in a World Cup qualifier and their hopes of salvaging a result from the game took a blow on 70 minutes.
Makoto Hasebe prodded past Kawashima from a whipped free-kick from the right wing to score an own-goal to put the game beyond his side and ensure they go into their remaining qualifiers and the Confederations Cup on the back of two defeats.
While Japan look to have secured their qualification for Rio, they still have work to do to be sure of top spot in group B of the Asia section.
Bulgaria meanwhile will be hoping to keep up the momentum from the win to secure second place or even challenge for top spot in European group C.
Lyuboslav Penev's men are currently three points behind leaders Italy whom they face in September.
Both sides remain unbeaten in their World Cup qualification campaigns so far.