Japan celebrates a goal against Costa Rica.

Japan qualified for the round of 16 of the Fifa Women’s World Cup with a simple win over Costa Rica, which was followed by Spain’s win over Zambia, ensuring both teams advanced from Group C.

Hikaru Naomoto and Aoba Fujino both scored in the first three minutes to give the 2011 winners a three-point lead.

With one game remaining, Japan was on the verge of qualifying, but they needed Spain to win to ensure their place in the knockout stages.

Japan and Spain, the first teams to qualify, each have six points in Group C and will compete for first place.

That game will be played on July 31, with Japan needing to win in order to finish first owing to Spain’s better goal difference.

Costa Rica and Zambia are the first two teams to be eliminated from the competition. They will also face off on Monday, with both looking for their first World Cup success.

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