Player Ratings: Japan 0-0 Greece

Player Ratings: Japan 0-0 Greece
© Getty Images
Sports Mole rates every player's performance from the goalless draw between Japan and Greece in their World Cup clash.

Japan and Greece played out a 0-0 draw in their World Cup Group C clash in Natal on Thursday.

Neither side was able to break the deadlock in the 90 minutes, despite Greece being reduced to 10 men when Kostas Katsouranis was sent off in the 40th minute, as the teams posted their first point each of the tournament.

Here, Sports Mole rates each player on their contribution to the match.


Japan lineup before their game with Greece on June 19, 2014© Getty Images

JAPAN

Goal

Eiji Kawashima: The keeper was solid throughout in the 90 minutes as he bounced back from his error against the Ivory Coast. He made one great save to deny Theofanis Gekas as he got down low to his right to palm the ball away in the second half. Communication and handling were strong. (7/10)

Defence

Atsuto Uchida: The Schalke defender had a decent outing in Natal. He was better in the final third of the Greece half than his own as he occasionally struggled against Jose Holebas as he raided forward. The 26-year-old put the ball on a plate for Yoshito Okubo to score, but his teammate missed a glorious chance. (6/10)

Maya Yoshida: Had a quiet game as he wasn't called upon that often as his side dominated possession. Was strong in the air and distribution was solid as he always seemed to find a blue shirt. (6/10)

Yasuyuki Konno: Defended well in the first half and make a couple of crucial interventions. Struggled in the air against Samaras late in the game, but other than that like Yoshida he was quite comfortable. (6/10)

Yuto Nagatomo: Raided forward extremely well as he always seemed to find space to attack on the left-hand side. Defensively he wasn't called upon and was allowed a free role to raid forward. Could have found the net late in the game, but he miscued his shot. His final ball lacked quality for the majority of the game. (6/10)

Midfield

Hotaru Yamaguchi: More productive than his first game of the tournament, but still lacked quality throughout the 90 minutes. Distribution was solid, but lacked penetration to help in the final third of the pitch. (6/10)

Makoto Hasebe: Still not 100% fit after recovering from an injury before the tournament. Received a booking for a challenge on Samaras, but also drew the foul that saw Katsouranis sent off. (6/10)

Keisuke Honda: Wasn't at his best as he struggled to find crucial pass in the final third. Was still heavily involved in everything his side did going forward, but couldn't find bit of magic to unlock the Greece defence. (6/10)

Attack

Yoshito Okubo: Missed a glorious chance to fire his side in front after latching on to Uchida's pass at the back post. Showed a few good touches in and around the box, but was largely nullified as the game progressed. (5/10)

Yuya Osako: Was his side's best player in the first half as he showed intent with his direct running and movement in front of goal. Unlucky not to hit the target with good effort from 20 yards, which went just past the post. Replaced in the second despite strong showing. (7/10)

Shinji Okazaki: Showed a few good runs in the first half, but the game passed him by in the second half as he failed to have any effect in the final third. (5/10)

Substitutes

Yasuhito Endo: Was busy when he came on and moved the ball around a lot in the Greece half. Used the ball well and didn't give possession away, and saw his free kick well saved by Orestis Karnezis. Not clinical enough in the final third like many of his teammates. (6/10)

Shinji Kagawa: Displayed his ability after being dropped from the starting lineup with one defence-splitting pass to play Uchida in, but Okubo missed the chance. Showed some neat touches in the final third, but most of it was just ineffective possession football, which didn't trouble the Greece backline. (6/10)


Greece lineup before their game with Japan on June 19, 2014© Getty Images

GREECE

Goal

Orestis Karnezis: The keeper had a strong showing as he made several good stops, most of which were from distance but still required saving. Was always in command of his area and his handling was spot on. (7/10)

Defence

Vasilis Torosidis: Had a couple of decent chances as he raided forward from the back late in the first half. Saw one effort saved and glanced the other wide of the post. His role changed in the second half as he stayed back to help his side hold out for the point. (7/10)

Kostas Manolas: Was a strong presence throughout the game as time and again he disrupted Japan's attacks. Always seemed to be in the right place to make the intervention and was also strong in the air. (8/10)

Sokratis Papastathopoulos: Like Manolas he had a strong game at the back. He was commanding in the air and although he nearly made an error that cost his side late on, his performance merited the miss from Japan. (7/10)

Jose Holebas: Struggled defensively at times as he had a tendency to raid forward and neglect his duties at the back. Put in a few decent crosses as he pushed forward and had a late attempt that was well saved by Kawashima. (6/10)

Midfield

Giannis Maniatis: Improved showing from his display in his side's first game. Used the ball well and was disciplined in his approach in the middle to help protect his back four, to ensure they weren't overwhelmed. (6/10)

Giannis Fetfatzidis: Didn't make much of an impact in his 40 minutes on the field. Was sacrificed to help reshape the midfield following Katsouranis's dismissal as he was replaced by Karagounis. (6/10)

Kostas Katsouranis: Was sent off for two bookable offences, earning the second yellow card for a poor challenge on Hasebe. On another day he could have cost his side and will be relieved to see them earn a point. (4/10)

Panagiotis Kone: A bright display from the Bologna man building on his performance from the first game when he was his side's best player. Used the ball intelligently and saw an effort well saved by Kawashima in the first half, was disciplined in his role following Katsouranis's sending-off. (7/10)

Attack

Kostas Mitroglou: His poor 2014 continued as he was forced off in the first half with an injury following a clash with Yoshida. Didn't make much of an impact in his time on the pitch. (5/10)

Georgios Samaras: Wasn't allowed to push forward on the left side following the sending-off of Katsouranis, but showed willingness to help the team at the back and remained rigid and disciplined in his position. Couldn't find the target with late header. (6/10)

Substitutes

Theofanis Gekas: Put in a better performance than his first display of the tournament after replacing Mitroglou. Could have found the net with well-placed header in the second half only to be denied by Kawashima. Led the line well to give his side breathing room in the second half. (6/10)

Giorgos Karagounis: Used the ball well and showed guile to help his side ease the pressure on themselves. Provided a good defensive shield for his back four as Japan tried to up the ante in the second half. (6/10)

Dimitris Salpingidis: Replaced Kone late in the game and didn't have time to make an impact on the pitch. (6/10)


 Giorgos Karagounis of Greece challenges Shinji Kagawa of Japan during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Group C match between Japan and Greece at Estadio das Dunas on June 19, 2014
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