Japan and 10-man Greece played out a stalemate that keeps alive both teams' chances of progressing from Group C.

Greece captain Konstantinos Katsouranis was sent off for two bookable offences before the break in Natal.

The Greeks went close with a second-half header from Theofanis Gekas, which was saved by Eiji Kawashima.

Yoshito Okubo missed from just a couple of yards and Atsuto Uchida also prodded wide from a good position as Japan were left frustrated.

The draw leaves both teams on one point heading into the final round of group matches.

Greeks stay solid

Greece

Greece managed a clean sheet for the first time in a World Cup match and managed to avoid defeat for just the second time in their eight matches. The only game they have scored in during that run was a 2-1 win over Nigeria four years ago.

Japan face Colombia, who have already qualified with six points, and a win could still take them above Ivory Coast, whose current tally is three points.

Fernando Santos's Greeks must defeat the Ivorians and hope that Japan's result gives them a chance to finish in second place.

Whatever the permutations, a second goalless draw of the tournament offered little to suggest that either of these sides can qualify for the last 16.

Although Panagiotis Kone threatened when he surged forward from halfway and forced a low save from Kawashima, Japan were in control of possession from the start.

Yuya Osako curled wide from 25 yards and Keisuke Honda's free-kick was thwarted by Orestis Kanezis' scrambling save before Yoshito Okubo headed over from Yuto Nagatomo's cross.

Shortly after recalled Fulham striker Konstantinos Mitroglu had limped off with an injury, Katsouranis was sent off for a lunge at Makoto Hasebe.

That seemed to spark Greece and defender Vaileios Torosidis' powerful effort was pushed away by Kawashima before the same player missed with a header from a Georgios Karagounis free-kick.

Georgios Samaras missed narrowly with an effort straight from the kick-off for the second-half.

Despite being a man down, the Greeks continued to have the better chances and Kawashima showed real quality to push a Gekas header around a post from a Georgios Karagounis corner.

Midway through the second half, Japan should have moved in front when Atsuto Uchida's fine cross was driven well wide by Okubo from just a couple of yards.

Uchida then stabbed wide after the Greeks failed to clear and Maya Yoshida almost diverted a driven cross on target.

Yashito Endo had a free-kick saved in the final minute and Santos' side were able to hold out for a draw but neither side looks likely to make it beyond the group stage.

Greece coach Fernando Santos:

"My players were brilliant, They worked hard after the red card. Without the red card we probably would have won the game."

Greece defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos:

"It was a terrible start, losing a man but we have a point and we have hope.

"If things go well, let us get four points with a win in the next game - and if God decides that we are eliminated because of the other result, so be it."

Japan manager Alberto Zaccheroni:

"We played too slowly. This is not a positive result. We absolutely needed to win."

Konstantinos Katsouranis

Katsouranis has been sent off in three of his last 16 appearances for club and country

Konstantinos Mitroglou

Fulham striker Konstantinos Mitroglou limped off after 34 minutes.

Eiji Kawashima

Greece have failed to score in seven of their eight World Cup matches

Japan fans

Both teams could still reach the knock-out phase

Lineup, Bookings (5) & Substitutions (5)

Japan

  • 01 Kawashima
  • 02 Uchida
  • 05 Nagatomo
  • 16 Yamaguchi
  • 22 Yoshida
  • 15 Konno
  • 13 Okubo
  • 17 Hasebe Booked (Endo - 45' )
  • 18 Osako (Kagawa - 57' )
  • 04 Honda
  • 09 Okazaki

Substitutes

  • 03 Sakai
  • 06 Morishige
  • 07 Endo
  • 08 Kiyotake
  • 10 Kagawa
  • 11 Kakitani
  • 12 Nishikawa
  • 14 Aoyama
  • 19 Inoha
  • 20 Saito
  • 21 Sakai
  • 23 Gonda

Greece

  • 01 Karnezis
  • 15 Torosidis Booked
  • 20 Holebas
  • 21 Katsouranis Dismissed after an earlier booking
  • 04 Manolas
  • 19 Papastathopoulos
  • 02 Maniatis
  • 08 Kone (Salpingidis - 81' )
  • 09 Mitroglou (Gekas - 35' )
  • 18 Fetfatzidis (Karagounis - 42' )
  • 07 Samaras Booked

Substitutes

  • 03 Tzavellas
  • 05 Moras
  • 06 Tziolis
  • 10 Karagounis
  • 11 Vyntra
  • 12 Glykos
  • 13 Kapino
  • 14 Salpingidis
  • 16 Christodoulopoulos
  • 17 Gekas
  • 22 Samaris
  • 23 Tachtsidis
Ref: Joel Aguilar
Att: 39,485

Match Stats

Shots

18 9

On target

4 4

Corners

5 7

Fouls

23 18

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Japan 0, Greece 0.

90:00 +4:13 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Japan 0, Greece 0.

90:00 +3:00

Foul by Maya Yoshida (Japan).

90:00 +3:00

Sokratis (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +0:58

Foul by Yasuyuki Konno (Japan).

90:00 +0:58

Dimitrios Salpingidis (Greece) wins a free kick on the right wing.

89:20

Foul by Maya Yoshida (Japan).

89:20

Orestis Karnezis (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

89:04

Attempt saved. Yasuhito Endo (Japan) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

87:59 Booking

Booking Vasilis Torosidis (Greece) is shown the yellow card for hand ball.

87:52

Hand ball by Vasilis Torosidis (Greece).

87:34

Attempt saved. José Holebas (Greece) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Georgios Samaras.

87:08

Foul by Yasuyuki Konno (Japan).

87:08

Georgios Samaras (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

85:18

Foul by Maya Yoshida (Japan).

85:18

Georgios Samaras (Greece) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

84:33

Attempt missed. Maya Yoshida (Japan) header from very close range is too high. Assisted by Yuto Nagatomo following a corner.

84:32

Attempt missed. Yuto Nagatomo (Japan) right footed shot from the left side of the box misses to the right following a corner.

84:11

Corner, Japan. Conceded by José Holebas.

80:32

Attempt missed. Georgios Samaras (Greece) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Giorgos Karagounis with a cross following a corner.

80:20 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Greece. Dimitrios Salpingidis replaces Panagiotis Kone.

79:35

Corner, Greece. Conceded by Yuto Nagatomo.

78:40

Foul by Atsuto Uchida (Japan).

78:40

Giorgos Karagounis (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

76:56

Corner, Japan. Conceded by Orestis Karnezis.

76:53

Attempt saved. Yoshito Okubo (Japan) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Yasuhito Endo.

75:40

Foul by Yasuyuki Konno (Japan).

75:40

Panagiotis Kone (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

75:10

Yoshito Okubo (Japan) wins a free kick on the right wing.

75:10

Foul by José Holebas (Greece).

70:53

Attempt missed. Atsuto Uchida (Japan) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.

69:43

Attempt blocked. Keisuke Honda (Japan) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Yoshito Okubo.

68:48

Shinji Kagawa (Japan) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

68:48

Foul by Panagiotis Kone (Greece).

68:20

Offside, Greece. Sokratis tries a through ball, but Theofanis Gekas is caught offside.

67:31

Attempt missed. Yoshito Okubo (Japan) left footed shot from the left side of the six yard box is close, but misses the top left corner. Assisted by Atsuto Uchida.

66:31

Attempt blocked. Shinji Okazaki (Japan) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Yuto Nagatomo.

66:17

Attempt blocked. Keisuke Honda (Japan) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

65:31

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

64:31

Delay in match Maya Yoshida (Japan) because of an injury.

64:31

Delay in match Vasilis Torosidis (Greece) because of an injury.

64:30

Keisuke Honda (Japan) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

64:30

Foul by José Holebas (Greece).

63:45

Foul by Yoshito Okubo (Japan).

63:45

Georgios Samaras (Greece) wins a free kick on the left wing.

62:26

Foul by Shinji Okazaki (Japan).

62:26

Georgios Samaras (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

61:12

Foul by Yoshito Okubo (Japan).

61:12

Georgios Samaras (Greece) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

60:36

Foul by Shinji Okazaki (Japan).

60:36

Kostas Manolas (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

60:22

Corner, Japan. Conceded by Vasilis Torosidis.

59:55

Attempt missed. Panagiotis Kone (Greece) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a corner.

59:15

Corner, Greece. Conceded by Eiji Kawashima.

59:14

Attempt saved. Theofanis Gekas (Greece) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Giorgos Karagounis with a cross.

58:49

Corner, Greece. Conceded by Keisuke Honda.

58:14

Corner, Greece. Conceded by Shinji Kagawa.

57:33

Corner, Greece. Conceded by Atsuto Uchida.

56:56

Foul by Keisuke Honda (Japan).

56:56

Giorgos Karagounis (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

56:20 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Japan. Shinji Kagawa replaces Yuya Osako.

55:39

Corner, Japan. Conceded by Giorgos Karagounis.

55:02

Attempt blocked. Yasuhito Endo (Japan) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

54:00 Booking

Booking Georgios Samaras (Greece) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

53:47

Yoshito Okubo (Japan) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

53:47

Foul by Georgios Samaras (Greece).

53:01

Foul by Yuya Osako (Japan).

53:01

Giorgos Karagounis (Greece) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

49:41

Yuto Nagatomo (Japan) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

49:41

Foul by Panagiotis Kone (Greece).

46:30

Yoshito Okubo (Japan) wins a free kick on the right wing.

46:30

Foul by José Holebas (Greece).

45:02

Attempt missed. Georgios Samaras (Greece) right footed shot from more than 35 yards misses to the right. Assisted by Theofanis Gekas.

45:00 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Japan. Yasuhito Endo replaces Makoto Hasebe because of an injury.

45:00

Second Half begins Japan 0, Greece 0.

45:00 +2:08 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Japan 0, Greece 0.

45:00 +1:12

Offside, Greece. Giannis Maniatis tries a through ball, but Theofanis Gekas is caught offside.

45:00 +0:41

Hand ball by Shinji Okazaki (Japan).

44:18

Attempt missed. Vasilis Torosidis (Greece) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Giorgos Karagounis following a set piece situation.

43:47

Foul by Yoshito Okubo (Japan).

43:47

Georgios Samaras (Greece) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

43:05

Hand ball by Shinji Okazaki (Japan).

42:38

Shinji Okazaki (Japan) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

42:38

Foul by Vasilis Torosidis (Greece).

41:10 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Greece. Giorgos Karagounis replaces Ioannis Fetfatzidis.

40:26

Offside, Greece. José Holebas tries a through ball, but Theofanis Gekas is caught offside.

39:28

Corner, Greece. Conceded by Eiji Kawashima.

39:24

Attempt saved. Vasilis Torosidis (Greece) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

38:31

Corner, Japan. Conceded by Sokratis.

38:29

Attempt blocked. Yuya Osako (Japan) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

37:18 Dismissal

Dismissal Second yellow card to Konstantinos Katsouranis (Greece) for a bad foul.

37:15

Makoto Hasebe (Japan) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

37:15

Foul by Konstantinos Katsouranis (Greece).

35:00

Foul by Keisuke Honda (Japan).

35:00

José Holebas (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

34:19 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Greece. Theofanis Gekas replaces Kostas Mitroglou because of an injury.

32:49

Attempt missed. Yoshito Okubo (Japan) header from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Yuto Nagatomo with a cross.

31:08

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

30:04

Delay in match Kostas Mitroglou (Greece) because of an injury.

28:04

Attempt saved. Keisuke Honda (Japan) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top right corner.

27:05

Yoshito Okubo (Japan) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

27:05

Foul by Sokratis (Greece).

26:14 Booking

Booking Konstantinos Katsouranis (Greece) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

26:12

Yuya Osako (Japan) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

26:12

Foul by Konstantinos Katsouranis (Greece).

25:46

Foul by Yuya Osako (Japan).

25:46

Vasilis Torosidis (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

24:49

Foul by Yuya Osako (Japan).

24:49

Kostas Manolas (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

22:44

Keisuke Honda (Japan) wins a free kick on the left wing.

22:44

Foul by Ioannis Fetfatzidis (Greece).

22:26

Attempt blocked. Maya Yoshida (Japan) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Hotaru Yamaguchi.

20:28

Attempt missed. Yuya Osako (Japan) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right.

19:26

Keisuke Honda (Japan) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

19:26

Foul by Georgios Samaras (Greece).

18:34

Attempt saved. Yuya Osako (Japan) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Yoshito Okubo.

17:47

Keisuke Honda (Japan) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

17:47

Foul by José Holebas (Greece).

16:40

Offside, Japan. Keisuke Honda tries a through ball, but Yuya Osako is caught offside.

15:07

Attempt blocked. Yoshito Okubo (Japan) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Hotaru Yamaguchi.

14:44

Yoshito Okubo (Japan) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

14:44

Foul by Konstantinos Katsouranis (Greece).

12:45

Yuya Osako (Japan) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

12:45

Foul by Sokratis (Greece).

11:44 Booking

Booking Makoto Hasebe (Japan) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

11:41

Foul by Makoto Hasebe (Japan).

11:41

Giannis Maniatis (Greece) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

10:39

Foul by Yoshito Okubo (Japan).

10:39

Georgios Samaras (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

10:03

Attempt saved. Panagiotis Kone (Greece) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Ioannis Fetfatzidis.

7:17

Atsuto Uchida (Japan) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

7:17

Foul by Georgios Samaras (Greece).

4:37

Corner, Greece. Conceded by Atsuto Uchida.

3:54

Attempt blocked. Kostas Mitroglou (Greece) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is blocked. Assisted by Panagiotis Kone.

3:22

Foul by Makoto Hasebe (Japan).

3:22

Panagiotis Kone (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

2:58

Keisuke Honda (Japan) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

2:58

Foul by Konstantinos Katsouranis (Greece).

1:39

Foul by Shinji Okazaki (Japan).

1:39

Panagiotis Kone (Greece) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

1:30

Attempt blocked. Hotaru Yamaguchi (Japan) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Yoshito Okubo.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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