HANGZHOU, China -- Defending champion Germany, with a
record-setting goal from Birgit Prinz, beat Japan 2-0 on Monday to
advance to the quarterfinals of the women's World Cup.
England was the second team to advance from Group A with a 6-1
win over Argentina in Chengdu.
Germany finished the group stage with seven points, followed by
England with five, Japan with four and Argentina with none.
Germany will meet the second place team from Group B -- probably
the United States or North Korea. England gets the Group B winner,
again probably the U.S. or North Korea. Group B wraps up on
Germany dominated the game and opened the scoring when the ball
fell to Prinz's feet off a corner kick in the first half. She
quickly buried the ball into the top of the goal for her 13th goal
in World Cup finals competition.
That breaks the record Prinz shared with American Michelle
Renate Lingor added a late penalty for Germany.
Germany, playing without midfielder Simone Laudehr who was
suspended because she had picked up two yellow cards, could have
scored more except for poor shooting and excellent goalkeeping by
Fukumoto robbed Petra Wimbersky in the fifth minute, tipping a
hard shot over the bar.
Fukumoto also needed to be sharp to turn away a hard shot from
substitute Fatmire Bajramaj midway through the second half.
Wimbersky missed an open goal with 15 minutes left,
disappointing the pro-German crowd of 39,800 at the Hangzhou Dragon