FIFA World Cup 2022: Japan defeated China in their qualifier and edged closer to qualification for a spot in Qatar.
Hajime Moriyasu's Blue Samurai will now play either China or Iran in the semi-finals.
Takehiro Tomiyasu's first-half header was enough to seal it for Japan.
Moriyasu, who will also maintain his current assignment as the coach for Japan's under-21 team for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, pledged to bring new blood to the top national side.
The 34-year-old defensive midfielder's departure from the Blue Samurai could mean a changing of the guard for the team, with former AC Milan striker Keisuke Honda, 32, also saying he plans to retire from the national squad.
Despite the heart-breaking loss, Japanese fans set a precedent for fans across the world by cleaning the stadium stands.
As dawn broke in Tokyo, Japan fans had dared to believe their team was about to make World Cup history.
Belgium coach Roberto Martinez said his side should accept they will be the underdogs in their World Cup quarter-final against star-studded Brazil on Friday.
Belgium poured forward and Nacer Chadli grabbed a dramatic winner.
FIFA World Cup 2018, Highlights, Belgium vs Japan: Belgium beat Japan 3-2, to play Brazil in quarter-finals
Japan have the spirit and mentality to reach the World Cup quarter-finals for the first time in their history, believes coach Akira Nishino.
After making nine changes for last Thursday's win over England, Martinez is expected to revert to the line-up which impressed in one-sided wins over Panama and Tunisia.
The Blue Samurai have reached the last 16 twice before, in 2002 and 2010, but on each occasion fell at the first hurdle.
Japan advanced to a last-16 tie against Belgium as Akira Nishino's team received two fewer bookings across their three group games than the six picked up by Senegal.
Japan went through by the slimmest of margins -- their fair play record -- despite losing their final group match to Poland.
Yerry Mina fired Colombia into the last 16 of the World Cup with a 1-0 win over Group H rivals Senegal.
FIFA World Cup 2018, Highlights, Japan vs Poland: Despite a 0-1 loss to Poland, Japan have qualified for the last 16 as they had 2 less yellow cards than Senegal -- fair play ground.
The Blue Samurai have recovered from months of disarray to be at the verge of the knockout stages.