2018 FIFA World Cup: Day 14 Round-up

South Korea players celebrate while Germany players look dejected after the match. REUTERS/Dylan Martinez

The penultimate day of group games at 2018 FIFA World Cup saw plenty of drama with Groups E and F to settle. 

Brazil and Switzerland needed at least a point to escape Group E whilst Group F however was a lot more complex with all four teams capable of qualifying for the knockouts.

Well, there is only one place to start.

 

Group F

World Cup - Group F - South Korea vs Germany
South Korea’s Kim Young-gwon opened the scoring in injury time to send reigning champions, Germany crashing out. (REUTERS)

 

Mexico needed a point to qualify as group winners, whilst Sweden and Germany wins would dump them out. 

South Korea meanwhile could of snuck through as runners-up if Sweden lost to Mexico and they saw off Germany by a two goal margin. 

The opening halves of both matches finished goalless but Sweden were the first team to score, when Ludwig Augustinsson tucked home a Viktor Claesson mis-hit fell at his feet from a tight angle at the back post five minutes into second half. 

Things then got even better for Sweden when Andres Granqvist put them 2-0 up after slotting a penalty into top corner, following Marcus Berg’s trip up by Hector Moreno. 

Germany at that point were desperately chasing at least one goal and had a chance in 68th minute, when Mario Gomez could only head into Cho Hyun-Woo’s palms. 

Six minutes later, Sweden had completed a stunning win after Edson Alvarez accidentally put the ball into his own net, trying to clear a shot by Ola Toivonen to complete a 3-0 win. 

Germany meanwhile were still searching for that one goal to send them through and Mats Hummel nearly gave them that three minutes from stoppage time, heading wide a cross from Mesut Ozil. 

In the end, they were punished two minutes into injury time when Kim Young-Gwon poked home at the back post.

The Linesman initially ruled it for offside but Referee, Mark Geiger consulted VAR before overturning the decision much to South Korea’s delight. 

That meant that Germany needed two in the dying minutes and were ultimately punished four minutes later through a Manuel Neuer mistake. 

Out of position, the Bayern Munich goalie lost possession in South Korea’s half and Ju Se-jong played a long ball for Heung Son-min to chase and roll home into an empty net and make it 2-0 for the Green Falcons. come full time.

The results mean that Sweden top Group F from Mexico and will meet Switzerland, whilst the Mexicans face an all South-American last 16 clash against Brazil. 

 

Group E

World Cup - Group E - Serbia vs Brazil
Brazil saw off Serbia to advance to last 16 as group winners. (Reuters)

Brazil and Switzerland needed just a point to qualify whilst Serbia had to beat Brazil to be sure of a last 16 spot. 

In end, Brazil ran out 2-0 winners with goals from Paulinho and Thiago Silva to secure qualification. 

Paulinho”s goal came in 36th minute after getting on end of Phillipe Coutinho’s through ball and poking home via a high foot past Serbia’s Vladmir Stojkovic. 

Serbia then attacked throughout second half against a stubborn Brazil defence, in knowledge that they needed to score twice to put the Brazilians out. 

Eventually their efforts were undone midway through when Thiago Silva headed in unmarked from a corner kick. 

Switzerland meanwhile drew 2-2 with already eliminated Costa Rica. 

Blerim Dzemaili opened the scoring with a close range volley from a inaccurate header. 

Kendall Waston then equalised ten minutes in when he headed in from Joel Campbell’s corner. 

Josip Drmic then handed Switzerland what looked to be a late winner in 88th minute when he fired home a long pass into the box. 

Costa Rica then had two late penalty chances with the first opportunity overturned by VAR, before Joel Campbell was brought down for a definite penalty. 

Bryan Ruiz then stepped up and hit the crossbar only for it to bounce in off the head of a powerless Yann Sommer to finish Group E with a lively 2-2 draw. 

The results mean that Brazil are through as group winners and therefore find them in the tougher half of the knockout draw, alongside the likes of France, Uruguay and Mexico. 

Switzerland meanwhile will join a fairly pan European half with the only exception being whoever wins Group H. 

 

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