USA star and captain Ashley Sanchez put her side in front in the first half with a composed finish.

However, Japan proved to be too much for the Stars and Stripes as second-half goals from Riko Ueki, Oto Kanno and Hinata Miyazawa propelled the Little Nadeshiko to their third consecutive win of the tournament.

The first half in Amman was evenly-matched with few clear-cut scoring opportunities created by either side.

In the 32nd minute Ashley Sanchez managed to steer a shot on goal after Civana Kuhlmann had picked her out with a cross but Japan goalkeeper Momoko Tanaka made a comfortable save.

One minute later, Sanchez then gave USA the lead when she ran on to a goal-kick from USA keeper Laurel Ivory that Japan’s defence failed to clear decisively.

Sanchez calmly placed her shot past Tanaka into the opposite corner of the net as the Little Nadeshiko conceded their first goal of the tournament.

Ivory had to be at her best early in the second half when she dived low to make a superb save on a close-range shot from Ueki.

However, Ivory could do nothing about Ueki’s equaliser when the Japanese forward got her head on the end of a corner kick.

USA were able to clear off their goalline initially but Ueki was there for the follow-up to bring the Little Nadeshiko level.

Japan then spurned a golden opportunity to complete their comeback in the 69th minute when, after good work from Sakura Nojima on the right wing, Miyazawa guided her close-range effort inches wide of Ivory’s post right post.

The Japanese completed their comeback with two goals in two minutes.

First, Kanno scored her first of the tournament with a crisp finish after Miyazawa player her in with a precise pass.

Japan’s No8 then went from provider to scorer when she cut in on her right foot on top of USA’s penalty area and struck a fierce shot with her right foot that squeezed past the Ivory’s post and in for Japan’s third of the night.

Sanchez scored a consolation goal from the penalty spot after she was brought down by a mistimed challenge from Nana Ono but in the end, Japan claimed all three points and advanced to the last eight to send USA home.