Host nation Japan claimed a first victory as Australia beat Argentina and Egypt held on to sideline Spain in Group C. New Zealand and Romania also won the group B on an intriguing opening day.
Let’s catch up on the scores and take out from the first round.
Olympic football scores
Japan 1, South Africa 0
Mexico 4, France 1
New Zealand 1, South Korea 0
Romania 1, Honduras 0
Australia 2, Argentina 0
Egypt 0, Spain 0
Ivory Coast 2, Saudi Arabia 1
Brazil 4, Germany 2
Group A: France floundering
The big result of the day was Mexico’s 4-1 loss to France with Alexis Vega and Sebastian Cordova giving El Tri a two-goal lead before the Blues took one off thanks to Andre-Pierre Gignac – a star of the Mexican club Tigres – -om the penalty spot.
The late efforts of Uriel Antuna and Eduardo Aguirre ended the rout of Jaime Lozano’s men in Tokyo, leaving the French in shock before their clash with South Africa in Saitama. There is little room for error now and the performance was hardly encouraging as France looked like a team that had been made up of far from prime candidates after the embarrassing French Football Federation struggle to distribute the convocations.
Elsewhere, Takefusa Kubo’s goal after 71 minutes gave the Japanese a victory to celebrate despite the lack of fans at the Tokyo stadium.
Group D: Barnstorming Brazil
After yesterday’s excitement in the goal-filled women’s games, it was Brazil’s turn to go mad in Yokohama with Richarlison netting a hat trick in the first 30 minutes before Germany tried to recover.
Nadiem Amiri and then Ragnar Ache made it 3-2 with just over five minutes to go, but the Brazilians extended their lead thanks to Paulinho on death and came away with an important 4-2 victory before facing Ivory Coast and Saudi Arabia before the end of the group stage.
The Ivorians triumphed over the Saudis, with Franck Kessie grabbing the winner at the Yokohama International Stadium to finish second in the group, with the South Americans now looking likely to win after having already faced Germany.
Group C: Australia beats Argentina
Another surprise result was Australia’s 2-0 success against the Argentines, which now makes qualifying a bit more difficult, as Spain’s draw against Egypt keeps things interesting in this pool where La Rojita was favorite.
Lachlan Wales and Marco Tilio wreaked havoc for the Australians in Sapporo while the Spaniards couldn’t find a way to get past Egypt and lost Oscar Mingueza as well as Dani Ceballos to injuries in the first half so that the depth of Luis de la Fuente’s team was already tested.
Spain will then face Australia and Argentina the last of the group in what could be a potentially decisive meeting for the two nations.
Group B: victory for New Zealand and Romania
Arguably not as exciting as the action in Groups A and D, the OlyWhites and Tricolorii Mici both opened with wins 1-0 respectively as Chris Wood scored the game’s only goal against South Korea and one goal. against his camp Elvin Oliva settled things against Honduras.
New Zealand and Romania won’t meet until the final round of matches, and both will want to secure their places in the knockout stage ahead of the next round of matches in Kashima ahead of their clash in Sapporo.