So, we are done with the 2nd round of this year’s World Cup group stages. Here are the highlights from the 2nd match-day of FIFA World Cup group stages.
In Group A, the hosts Russia took on Egypt and gained heavy lead of 3 goals by the 62nd minute. In the 74th minute, Salah scored a penalty but it was far from saving Egypt. The game ended 3-1 with Russia advancing to the round of 16 and Egypt failing to pass through the group stage.
The other game was played between Uruguay and Saudi Arabia. In the 2nd half, an unmarked Luis Suarez scored from the corner giving Uruguay the lead. Saudi Arabia failed to catch up and thus, lost 1-0 at full time. This confirmed Uruguay’s spot in last 16 and ended Saudi Arabia’s chances of advancing.
Portugal faced Morocco in the first game of Group B. The match started off in style when Ronaldo’s bullet header gave Portugal the early lead. Morocco couldn’t recover since then and lost the game 1-0, crashing out of the World Cup 2018.
In the second game Iran faced Spain that got a hard earned goal via Costa in the 2nd half. Iran found the net minutes later, before it was ruled offside. Spain emerged winners in the end with the score line 1-0.
Australia and Denmark battled first in Group C. Christian Eriksen gave his side the lead with a peach of a goal early on. Australia equalized that with a Jedinak’s penalty. The score line didn’t change further and both teams had to settle for a draw in the end.
In the other game, Peru had to face the challenge of France. French starlet Kylian Mbappe put his side ahead with a goal. Peru threw everything at France but couldn’t equalize. The loss saw Peru ending their World Cup dream and France through to pre quarter final round.
In the crucial Group D, Messi’s Argentina was vanquished with a 3-0 score. Sebic, Modric and Rakitic scored goals and weakened Argentina’s chances of going through, confirming their own place in the last 16.
Nigeria and Iceland also met each other in Group D where a brace from Ahmed Musa sealed the game for Nigeria, making this group more difficult.
Brazil and Costa Rica faced each other in a crunch game where no team could find net for the 90 minutes but Coutinho and Neymar scored in additional time, ending Costa Rica’s hopes of going further in the tournament.
Serbia and Switzerland also met, where Serbia went ahead with Mitrovic’s header early on. Switzerland leveled it with Xhaka’s strike and Shaqiri won it for the Swiss in the 90th minute with 2-1 at full time.
The clash between Mexico and South Korea was the first fixture of Group F where Mexico scored 2 goals and South Korea only managed one. The game finished 2-1 in favor of Mexico eliminating South Korea.
The other game saw Sweden taking on Germany in a do or die situation for the defending champions. Germany conceded in the first half but bounced back with an equalizer until a stunner from Toni Kroos in the dying moments confirmed Germany 3 points and kept them alive in the World Cup 2018.
Group G saw fire breathing Belgium thrashing Tunisia with a huge margin of 5-2. Lukaku and Hazard both scored a brace, each sending Belgium to the next round.
England and Panama locked their horns where the English side horsewhipped Panama with a 6-1 victory. Harry Kane became the top scorer of this World Cup with a hat trick and confirmed his side’s seat in the last 16.
The underdogs of Group H, Senegal and Japan drew their match with 2-2 score line. Sane and Moussa Wague scored for Senegal while Inui and Keisuke Honda scored for Japan. The draw complicated this group a bit with final verdict to be known on final match-day of group stage.
Poland had to face Colombia in a tough match where the Colombians outclassed their opponents. Goals from Yerry Mina, Falcao and Cuadrado ensured a 3-0 win, sending Poland out of the competition.