Football: Japan beat Costa Rica 2-0 to near Women's World Cup last 16

Japan took a giant step toward reaching the Women's World Cup last 16 after downing Costa Rica 2-0 for their second straight win in Group C on Wednesday.

Hikaru Naomoto's 25th-minute opener was followed by Aoba Fujino's goal two minutes later at Dunedin Stadium, where 11th-ranked Nadeshiko Japan kept another clean sheet against 36th-ranked Costa Rica following a 5-0 opening win over Zambia.

Japan's place in the knockout stage will be confirmed if Group C rivals Spain win or draw against Zambia later on Wednesday.

© Kyodo News