World Cupdate: Late Drama in Group B

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Welcome to your daily 2018 FIFA World Cup update, or World Cupdate, where we recap the past day’s proceedings from Russia while previewing what is still to come. These features will run every morning throughout the duration of the tournament and feature highlights, major news, and much more from Russia.


Here’s What Happened: Monday, June 25th

The final round of group stage matches kicked off Monday and Group B brought all the drama you could ever want. Group A just the day started and Russia’s storybook tournament hit a snag in a 3-0 loss to Uruguay that relegated the hosts to second place in the group. Luis Suárez scored what turned out to be the game winning goal just 10 minutes in as his Uruguay side cruised to first place.

Over in Group B, Portugal were in position to win the group until their match with Iran entered stoppage time. A VAR awarded penalty brought Iran level and they came within inches of winning the game in the dying seconds. If Iran scored, Portugal would have been eliminated from competition and Iran would have won the group. Instead, Spain came out on top of Group B after a late goal gave them a draw with Morocco. Spain will now face Russia in the Round of 16 while Portugal jump across the bracket to take on Uruguay.

Uruguay 3-0 Russia

Uruguay and Russia were the first two teams to qualify for the Round of 16 and they squared off on Monday to determine the winner and runner-up of Group A. Ten minutes into the match, Luis Suárez opened the scoring from a free kick and Uruguay never looked back. One time Golden Boot leader Denis Cheryshev found the back of the net again but this time for the wrong team. His own goal gave Uruguay a 2-0 that looked insurmountable when Russia went down to 10 men.

Suárez’s striking partner Edinson Cavani capped the scoring his his first goal of the tournament in the 90th minute to put a final stamp on Uruguay’s spot atop Group A.

As group winner, Uruguay will now face Group B runner-up Portugal in the Round of 16 on Saturday. Russia will still move on and face Group B winner Spain on Sunday.

Goals

  • Luis Suárez | URU (10′)
  • Denis Cheryshev | URU (23′ OG)
  • Edinson Cavani | URU (90′)

Highlights

Saudi Arabia 2-1 Egypt

A disastrous 2018 World Cup became even uglier for Egypt in a 2-1 defeat to Saudi Arabia in their final match of the tournament. Mo Salah opened the scoring for Egypt and it appeared for a time that the Pharaohs may avoid being shut out in the standings. Unfortunately, that scoreline did not hold as Saudi Arabia equalized in first half stoppage time then found a late winner in second half stoppage time to claim all three points.

Saudi Arabia exits the 2018 World Cup with a small consolation victory while Egypt faces a muddied future with rumors floating around that Mo Salah is contemplating retirement from international football.

Goals

  • Mo Salah | EGY (22′)
  • Salman Al-Faraj | KSA (45’+6′ PEN)
  • Salem Al-Dawsari | KSA (90’+5′)

Highlights

Spain 2-2 Morocco

Ever since firing their manager less than 48 hours before their first match of the tournament, 2010 champions Spain have looked anything but convincing through two matches. Still needing a result against Morocco to advance to the knockout rounds, Spain stood on the brink of crashing out of the World Cup in the group stage for the second straight time. Morocco held two separate leads but Spain kept fighting back and were able to get a draw.

For most of the afternoon, Spain was on track to finish second in the group due to Portugal’s lead over Iran, but thanks to Iran’s late equalizer, Spain won Group B when all was said and done.

Spain live to see another day and now prepare to take on hosts Russia in the Round of 16 on Sunday in Moscow.

Goals

  • Khalid Boutaïb | MOR (14′)
  • Isco | ESP (19′)
  • Youssef En-Nesyri | MOR (81′)
  • Iago Aspas | ESP (90’+1′)

Highlights

Iran 1-1 Portugal

For 90 minutes, it appeared as if Portugal was going to not only cruise into the Round of 16, but do it as the winner of a surprisingly difficult Group B. Then second half stoppage time began and chaos broke loose between Portugal and Iran.

Ricardo Quaresma gave Portugal a 1-0 lead in the 45th minute of the first half and that lead remained in tact for almost the rest of the way until VAR awarded Iran with a penalty in second half stoppage time. Karim Ansarifard converted the penalty and all of the sudden, Iran was a goal away of advancing and knocking Portugal out of the competition. Iran came agonizingly close to a last second winner but the shot sailed wide and Portugal hung on for a draw and a spot in the Round of 16.

The late Iran goal did have a major impact on Group B as it dropped Portugal to second place in the group, setting up a date with Group A winner Uruguay on Saturday.

Goals

  • Ricardo Quaresma | POR (45′)
  • Karim Ansarifard | IRN (90’+3′ PEN)

Highlights

That wraps all action from Group A and Group B at the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Uruguay, Russia, Spain, and Portugal all advance to the Round of 16. Next up, Group C and Group D contest their final group matches later today.


Goals of the Day

Match-day 3 of group stage competition is now underway in Russia, and with it, a few crowd pleasing strikes. Here are our three best from Monday’s action.

Luis Suárez (Uruguay)

No one knew it at the time, but this free kick goal from Luis Suárez turned out to be the Group A winning goal as his Uruguay side defeated Russia 3-0. Suárez avoids the wall with a low shot along the ground that beats the outstretched Russian goalkeeper.

Mo Salah (Egypt)

This is not the World Cup Mo Salah intended to have in any form but at least he still leaves Russia with two goals, including this beauty against Saudi Arabia. We can only hope this is not the last time we see Salah in a World Cup.

Ricardo Quaresma (Portugal)

The goal that quite simply put Portugal into the Round of 16 came courtesy of 34 year old Ricardo Quaresma with the outside of his right foot. Making his first start of the 2018 World Cup, Quaresma delivered for his team on the stroke of halftime.

Check back tomorrow for more great goals from the 2018 World Cup.


Group Update

A dramatic beginning to the final round of group stage matches provides us with our first matchups of the Round of 16 after Group A and Group B completed their portion of the competition. Here’s how it all shakes out after Monday’s games.

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Group A Final Standings

Uruguay’s victory over Russia gives them all nine possible points from the group stage and the top spot in the group. Saudi Arabia’s late winner over Egypt sees them leave the World Cup with three points as a consolation prize.

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Group B Final Standings

A drama filled final match-day for Group B was decided in the final moments with both games ending in draws, setting the final group standings shown above. Spain wins the group courtesy the second tie-breaker over Portugal for most goals scored. Iran came agonizingly close to advancing but could not find a late winner against Portugal. Three strong games from Morocco only netted them a single point but still something to build on.

Round of 16 Outlook

Here is how the Round of 16 will shape up for teams from Group A and Group B.

Saturday, June 30:  Uruguay (1A) v. Portugal (2B)

Sunday, July 1: Spain (2A) v. Russia (1B)


Who is Moving on, Who is Going Home

As groups move through their third round of matches, the knockout bracket will being to fill out. Here are the teams that have qualified for the Round of 16 and the teams that will be heading home.

Moving On

Group A: Uruguay, Russia

Group B: Spain, Portugal

Group C: France

Group D: Croatia

Group G: England and Belgium (seeding still TBD)

Going Home

Group A: Saudi Arabia, Egypt

Group B: Iran, Morocco

Group C: Peru

Group E: Costa Rica

Group G: Panama, Tunisia

Group H: Poland


Here’s What’s Next: Tuesday, June 26th

Looking at Tuesday’s World Cup schedule, there are many great storylines that could be born if results fall the right way. Messi could lead Argentina back from the brink, Nigeria could fly into the Round of 16, Iceland can write another fairytale. That’s just in Group D. Denmark could shock the world with an upset of France or Australia could make a surprise trip to the knockouts if things fall their way.

You won’t want to miss a second of Tuesday’s action. Here’s everything you need to know about today’s matches.

Australia v. Peru (Group C)

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via thehardtackle.com
Screen Shot 2018-06-26 at 3.24.24 AM
via thehardtackle.com
  • Time: 10:00 AM
  • Location: Fisht Stadium (Sochi)
  • How to Watch: FS1

If they hope to extend their stay in Russia, Australia knows it absolutely needs all three points from this game. Things will have to break their way in the other game as well but they need to take care of business on their end first. For Peru, leaving Russia with three points from this match would be reason for celebration after playing in their first World Cup since 1982.

Denmark v. France (Group C)

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via thehardtackle.com
Screen Shot 2018-06-26 at 3.25.35 AM
via thehardtackle.com
  • Time: 10:00 AM
  • Location: Luzhniki Stadium (Moscow)
  • How to Watch: FOX

The only guarantee going into this match is France will be advancing on regardless of the result. A win or draw for France sends it through as the group winner to face the runner-up from Group D. If Denmark can at least get a draw they will go through but all three points will give them the top spot in Group C.

Nigeria v. Argentina (Group D)

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via thehardtackle.com
Screen Shot 2018-06-26 at 3.27.11 AM
via thehardtackle.com
  • Time: 2:00 PM
  • Location: Saint Petersburg Stadium (St. Petersburg)
  • How to Watch: FOX

Argentina have been in complete disarray since their loss to Croatia last week but there is still hope for a spot in the Round of 16. A win from Messi and Co. gives them four points and give them the inside track for the second place spot in the group. Nigeria are coming off a convincing win over Iceland and know they only need a draw to book their own spot in the next round.

Iceland v. Croatia (Group D)

  • Time: 2:00 PM
  • Location: Rostov Arena (Rostov-On-Don)
  • How to Watch: FS1

Two commanding performances from Croatia have placed it in the Group D driver’s seat heading into this final match day. Already in the Round of 16, Croatia will only need a draw to secure the top spot and take on the Group C runner-up. Iceland are a great story and could its inaugural World Cup into a fairytale if they can pull off the upset and steal all three points.

You can watch all these games live on the channels listed or streaming online at FoxSports.com with a cable sign in.

If highlights are more your style, check out @FOXSoccer on Twitter where goals and game recaps are posted throughout the day.

All game times are listed in Eastern Standard Time


Golden Boot Standings

The Golden Boot Award goes to the top goal scorer at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

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Via beIN Sports

No real change here following Monday’s matches. Mo Salah jumps into the Top 10 for the time being with his goal against Saudi Arabia. Cristiano Ronaldo had an opportunity to tie Harry Kane but missed a penalty in the second half.


Keep up to date on everything World Cup right here on “The Bat Flip” where we will be posting our daily World Cupdate to recap what went on and preview what’s still to come in Russia.

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