However, with Fair Play Rule in play, Japan became the first team to qualify from the World Cup group stages via fair play rankings despite a 1-0 defeat with head coach Akira Nishino making six changes to an Asian side.
The second match saw the never give up attitude of the Japanese team as they twice clawed back from a goal down in each half to finish the match 2-2 against an impressive Senegalese side.
Nishino introduced Inui minutes later, but Japan barely fought back and the game petered out in the dying minutes in farcical circumstances with both sides, content with the result, idly rolling the ball around in their own half amid the fans' boos.
Japan and Senegal end the group stage even on points and goals, but Japan advance to the next round on fair play points.
"It was for us more important for us to get into the next round than to win the match, " Japan midfielder Gotoku Sakai said.
So despite losing 1-0 to Poland, they showed absolutely no intent on attacking.
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Denmark and France through to World Cup last 16 after goalless draw
Denmark and France meet at the Luzhniki Stadium on Tuesday afternoon knowing that a draw would be enough to satisfy both sides. The team lost rhythm inserting a different trio of attacking midfielders to support Antoine Griezmann and Olivier Giroud .
We did not go for victory, but we just relied on the other match. They also played to a 2-2 draw on Sunday.
Nishino made six changes to the starting lineup ahead of the match, saying some of his players were tired.
Goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima kept his place for the Samurai Blue despite a howler for Senegal's first goal in the 2-2 draw and repaid Nishino's faith with a wondrous save to keep the score goalless at half-time.
Then, with nine minutes remaining, Tomoaki Makino - in an attempt to intercept another risky cross by Grosicki - could only send the ball towards his own goal but Kawashima reacted well to make the save.
Japan faces Group G victor Belgium on Monday in Rostov-on-Don.
Poland squandered a big chance to double their lead on 74 minutes when Grosicki picked out Robert Lewandowski, who fired over the crossbar from close range.
Poland coach Adam Nawalka said his team proved they were not quitters by winning their first game at a World Cup since they beat Costa Rica in Germany in 2006. Yep, Senegal have been eliminated because they picked up more yellow cards that the Japanese.