Durban: Wesley Sneijder scored the only goal Saturday and the Netherlands beat Japan 1-0 for its second straight World Cup win.
Sneijder`s 53rd-minute strike finally broke through a Japanese defense that had stifled Dutch creativity in front of 62,010 fans at Moses Mabhida Stadium. It was Sneijder`s 15th goal in 63 internationals.
The Netherlands again failed to live up to its billing as one of the most fluid attacking teams of the tournament. The Dutch struggled to a 2-0 victory over Denmark in its first Group E match, while Japan had a 1-0 win over Cameroon.
The Dutch will advance to the knockout phase of the tournament if Cameroon and Denmark tie on Sunday.