A two-minute burst in the second half saw Ivory Coast come from behind to defeat Japan 2-1 in Recife on Saturday.
Japan led 1-0 at half-time at the Itaipava Arena Pernambuco thanks to Keisuke Honda but Ivory Coast claimed victory with two goals in as many minutes just after the hour-mark.
Full-back Serge Aurier created both goals with impressive crosses from the right with Wilfried Bony and Gervinho taking advantage, although the latter benefited from poor goalkeeping from Japan's Eiji Kawashima.
Saturday's game was the first time Ivory Coast have won their opening fixture at a FIFA World Cup as the African nation look to claim a maiden berth in the knockout stages in their third consecutive appearance at the global tournament.
The shock in the two starting line-ups was the absence of captain Didier Drogba from Ivory Coast's XI, after he failed to recover from a thigh strain suffered at training on Wednesday.
Bony took Drogba's spot up front, while coach Sabri Lamouchi made two other changes to the XI that began Ivory Coast's 2-1 win over El Salvador with Kolo Toure - who had struggled with malaria before the tournament - and Max Gradel being replaced by Didier Zokora and Yaya Toure.
Japan coach Alberto Zaccheroni recalled Makoto Hasebe after the captain recovered from a knee injury to make just his third appearance for club or country this year.
Hasebe started as one of two holding midfielders alongside Hotaru Yamaguchi, while Yuya Osako got the nod in Japan's most troublesome position - centre forward.
Of the four strikers in Zaccheroni's squad, Osako was the only one yet to have scored for Japan in 2014 but started at the point of their attack ahead of Shinji Okazaki, Yoshito Okubo and Yoichiro Kakitani.
Okazaki started on the right wing, while Okubo and Kakitani were named on the bench.
Ivory Coast had 59.7 per cent possession in the first half with the Africans starting stronger, as Bony received the ball in the box before his shot was deflected past the post in the sixth minute.
But Japan edged their way into the game and in the 16th minute they hit the front.
Yuto Nagatomo collected a throw-in and fed Honda on the edge of the box, and the Milan man slipped away from Toure and fired a thunderous strike into the top corner.
Atsuto Uchida could have made it 2-0 five minutes later but the full-back's powerful drive was parried by Boubacar Barry, before Ivory Coast's goalkeeper was almost chipped by Honda.
While Ivory Coast had more of the ball, they generally struggled to break down Japan's well-organised defence and their best opportunities came on the counter-attack.
After Toure and Arthur Boka just missed the target with free-kicks, Gervinho got free on the break in the 34th minute only for a scrambling Maya Yoshida to block his shot with a sliding challenge.
Honda slalomed through the opposition defence soon after only to watch his deflected shot loop over the bar, while Ivory Coast had a couple of half chances to Salomon Kalou and Boka but were unable to beat Kawashima.
After a frantic first half, the second started slightly slower but in the 57th minute Ivory Coast had a penalty claim ignored after Toure's drive into the box ended with a stumble following Yoshida's sliding challenge.
Drogba was brought on in the 62nd minute for Serey Die and almost created a goal immediately with a back-heel to Gervinho before Japan's defence scrambled the ball clear.
But the Ivory Coast fans did not need to wait long for an equaliser with Bony getting between Yoshida and Masato Morishige to nod Aurier's fine cross past Kawashima in the 64th minute.
A cross from Aurier set up Ivory Coast's second goal soon after but Kawashima would have been unhappy with his effort, failing to stop Gervinho's header despite getting two hands to the ball at the near post.
Kawashima did better in the 82nd minute, parrying Drogba's free-kick away, while the Galatasaray striker had a shot deflected past the post soon after.
But it mattered little as Ivory Coast moved into second in Group C behind Colombia ahead of their clash on Thursday, while Japan face Greece on the same day.
|20||G. Serey Die|
|Coach: S. Lamouchi|
for G. Serey Die 62'
for A. Boka 75'
for W. Bony 78'
|UEFA Europa League Review: Tottenham in late turnaround, Astra shock Lyon|
|League Two Preview: Morecambe, Burton out to continue fast starts|
|Sassuolo 4 Cittadella 1: Second-half rally sees Sassuolo into Coppa fourth round|
|Howard to take US sabbatical|
|Lokeren 1 Hull City 0: McGregor error gifts Belgians victory|
|Rwanda given Wednesday hearing for disqualification appeal|
|Pochettino hails substitutes´ impact|
|Mackay apologises over text message scandal|
|Brandao suspended over Motta incident|
|Borussia Dortmund v Bayer Leverkusen: Klopp expecting tough start|
|QPR complete loan deal for Vargas|
|League One Preview: Fleetwood, Preston face home tests|
|Chelsea v Leicester City: Schurrle expecting Chelsea improvement|
|Southampton v West Brom: Koeman wary of Albion|
|AEL 1 Tottenham 2: Late turnaround gives visitors play-off edge|
|CAF Confederation Cup: Al Ahly, Nkana out to reach last four|
|Swansea City v Burnley: Monk expecting stern examination|
|Bender close to Leverkusen return|
|Morocco will host Club World Cup despite Ebola concerns - FIFA|
|Schneiderlin not allowed to leave, insists Koeman|
|Dyche confident Burnley can strengthen|
|West Brom eye Samaras signing|
|Aston Villa v Newcastle United: Lambert wants more Weimann goals|
|MLS Preview: Sounders look to bounce back at Portland, Johnson banned for DC|
|Klose eyes European football|
|Monk warns Swansea over complacency|
|De Jong set for Newcastle return|
|Crystal Palace v West Ham: No excuses from Millen|
|Pearson looking for Chelsea indication|
|Blanc wants Rabiot to stay|
|Bowyer reveals Hull approach for Rhodes|
|Atletico out to gatecrash Barca, Real party once again|
|Barcelona go back to the future|
|CSL Preview: Beijing Guoan, Dalian Aerbin hit the road|
|Westwood returns to Ireland squad|
|Millen confident on Palace job prospects|
|Pedro struck down by gastroenteritis|
|Championship Preview: Magath preaches patience, Ipswich host East Anglian derby|
|Ribery not ready for Bayern return - Guardiola|
|Ancelotti: Di Maria has asked to leave|
|Moody resigns from Palace post|
|Everton v Arsenal: Martinez denies Everton have advantage|
|Coventry agree Ricoh return|
|Allardyce eyes defensive improvements|
|FA to investigate Cardiff dossier|
|Simeone not expecting to retain title|
|Balotelli bids farewell to Milan team-mates|
|Wenger open to signings after Arteta blow|
|Martinez to wait on Kone, Oviedo before considering late signings|
|Ocampos believes in Jardim´s methods|
|Villas-Boas calls for Zenit focus|
|Jovetic predicts bright future at City|
|Hamren hoping for quick Ibrahimovic recovery|
|Van Gaal retains focus on team ethic|
|Martinez calls for Everton consistency|
|Oxlade-Chamberlain: Arsenal´s best will come|
|Benaglio retires from Swiss duty|
|MLS Review: Galaxy stun Rapids, Sounders held|
|CONCACAF Champions League Review: MLS clubs shine|
|Panama 4 Cuba 0: Hosts finally win|
|K. League Preview: In-form Jeonbuk out to increase advantage|
|Copa Sudamericana Review: Penarol poised to advance, General Diaz on track|
|Liga MX Preview: America target another win|
|J.League Preview: In-form Kashima, Tokyo face tests|
|Fresh faces in Australia squad|
|Copa Argentina Review: River Plate, Estudiantes des Caseros reach quarters|
|Girard rues wasteful Lille|
|Scholes: ´I am scared for United´|
|Patient Inter got just rewards - Mazzarri|
|UEFA Europa League Review: Inter win in Iceland|
|UEFA Champions League Play-offs Review: Away sides prosper in play-off first legs|
|Fulham 0 Wolves 1: Sako inflicts more misery on hosts|
|Bundesliga Preview: Klopp set to break record as Dortmund host Leverkusen|
|Bruce reveals Aboubakar interest|
|Kane ready to light up Premier League|
|Jerome joins Norwich|
|Bayern destined to dominate Bundesliga once again|
|Perfectionist Guardiola raises the bar|
|Pohang Steelers 0 Seoul 0: Last-eight tie on a knife edge|
|Rojo pens five-year deal at United|
|Bayern Munich v Wolfsburg: Badstuber wary of tough opening|
|Eredivisie Preview: Ajax and PSV lock horns in De Topper, Groningen face Den Haag|
|Ligue 1 Preview: Bordeaux and Saint-Etienne out to continue dream starts|
|Thai Premier League Review: 10-man Buriram survive Muang Thong test, BEC Tero defeated|
|QPR seal Fer capture|
|Modric aiming for further glory after extending deal|
|Dzeko pens new City deal|
|Marotta: Vidal was never for sale|
|Evian v Paris Saint-Germain: Champions wary of wounded hosts|
|Ulloa gains confidence from debut goal|
|Hamann hoping for competitive Bundesliga|
|Dortmund duo Kirch and Ji sidelined|
|Irvine will not rush Gamboa|
|Messi, Mascherano laud La Masia|
|Moses: Hughes reason for Stoke move|
|Lahm aware of Dortmund threat|
|Atletico Madrid v Real Madrid: Rodriguez targets winning goal after opening Real account|
|Wilshere urges focus for return leg|
|Milan: No Liverpool offer for Balotelli|
|Michu chat aided Fernandez switch|
|Western Sydney Wanderers 1 Guangzhou Evergrande 0: Tempers flare after Sydney triumph|
|Van der Vaart headlines Netherlands squad|
|CAF Champions League Preview: Dead rubbers brought to life by Zamalek appeal|
|UEFA open Tavecchio investigation|
|Napoli sign Villarreal´s De Guzman|
|My heart is at Bayern, insists Muller|
|Altidore at his happiest - Poyet|
|Barca to go to CAS after FIFA rejects appeal|
|Swansea confirm Fernandez signing|
|Leverkusen will not relax, says Schmidt|
|Modric pens new Real deal|
|Amat relishing Fernandez competition|
|Snodgrass out for six months|
|Di Maria is Real´s best - Simeone|
|Kompany hails City contract dealings|
|Higuain: Napoli have to qualify|
|Martinez backs Barkley to bounce back|
|Stjarnan ready to exploit Inter´s ´weaknesses´|
|No price-tag pressure for Liverpool´s Markovic|
|Courtois admits departure thoughts|
|Skrtel: Liverpool must defend ´as a group´|
|Duff predicts Chelsea success, ´worried´ for Fulham|
|CONCACAF Champions League Review: Portland shine in Guyana|
|Simeone: We have a ´50-50 chance´|
|Copa Sudamericana Review: Cerro Porteno win away, Huachipato start strongly|
|Ronaldo injury ´not serious´ - Ancelotti|
|Martino names Argentina squad|
|Supercopa ´still open´ - Alonso|
|Expect goals in Lille, Porto clash - Girard|
|Courtois wants Cech stay|
|Benitez backs Napoli to score|
|Real Madrid 1 Atletico Madrid 1: Ronaldo off at half-time as Real denied|
|League Two Review: Morecambe, Burton remain unbeaten, Portsmouth defeat Northampton|