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Japan thumps 10-man Egypt to reach men's soccer semis

Manchester, England (Sports Network) - Japan cruised to a 3-0 victory over 10- man Egypt at Old Trafford on Saturday to reach the semifinals of the men's Olympic soccer tournament.

Kensuke Nagai got Japan off the mark in the 14th minute before Saad Samir's straight red card in the 41st minute reduced Egypt to 10 men.

The Japanese took advantage of the extra player as Maya Yoshida and Yuki Otsu scored a goal apiece in the final 12 minutes to secure a berth in the semis.

Hiroshi Kiyotake helped open the scoring for Japan, stripping the ball at the halfway line and running down the right flank. He played a cross into the box to find Nagai, who chested the ball down, got around Egyptian goalkeeper Ahmed El-Shenawi and slotted the ball into the empty net.

Things went from bad to worse for the African nation when Samir was given his marching orders for bringing down Manabu Saito just outside the box - the Egyptian defender was the last man back, thereby denying a scoring opportunity.

It took some time but Japan eventually put the match out of reach as Yoshida headed home a free kick in the 78th minute. Otsu did the same from a cross in open play five minutes later.

Japan will face either Mexico at Wembley on Tuesday as it attempts to earn a medal for the first time since taking bronze at the 1968 Olympics.

08/04 12:21:17 ET

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