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Football | Europe

Sanfrecce Hiroshima © Action Images

Hiroshima win, now face Al Ahly



Japan's Sanfrecce Hiroshima beat New Zealand part-timers Auckland City 1-0 in the opening game of the Club World Cup on Thursday (December 6) thanks to a 25-metre rocket from Toshihiro Aoyama.

The match was the first in which FIFA officially used goal-line technology although there was little opportunity to test its effectiveness in a game of few chances.

Aoyama's dipping drive in the 66th minute lit up a pedestrian encounter and sent the J-League champions into Sunday's quarter-finals where they face Egypt's Al-Ahly.

Yojiro Takahagi and Ryota Moriwaki hit the woodwork from long distance after the break as Hiroshima dominated without providing any real threat inside the box.

Sanfrecce Hiroshima go on to play Al-Ahly SC of Egypt in quarter-finals of the tournament. FIFA's Club World Cup tournament involves seven teams, joining later are Chelsea from the United Kingdom, CF Monterrey of Mexico, Corinthians of Brazil and Ulsan Hyundai of Korea.

The match was the first to use goal-line technology which was adopted by FIFA for selected tournaments this week. The German GoalRef system is in play at Yokohama, while the rival British system Hawk-Eye is installed at the other venue, Toyota.

The GoalRef system relies on electro-magnetic detection to determine if the ball, which contains special reflectors, has crossed the line. The goal could be seen to be modified with additional brackets to hold a detection frame around the goal mouth. Referee Djamel Haimoudi of Algeria wore a special wristwatch which would alert him when a goal had been scored.

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