World Cup Recap – Last 16 Matches Pt.12nd Jul 2018 |
The weekend produced plenty of shocks and drama with the first batch of Last 16 matches belonging to the underdogs. What the hell happened and what’s next? Were the GOATs put out to pasture?
Luckily for you, all is recalled in fine detail right here…
It got too Messi for Argentina
France secured their progression into the quarterfinals with a slick win over a faltering Argentina side in which Lionel Messi once again failed to shine. The 4-3 scoreline looks like it was a close encounter but it felt anything but with the Argentina goals coming from moments of individual brilliance rather than great team play.
Kylian Mbappe scored a brace to secure the win despite a stoppage-time goal from Sergio Aguero causing a late scare. The better team won the day with France now looking well placed to replicate their 1998 World Cup victory.
Ur the Guy Cavani
Uruguay proved that they have the more fearsome attack with Edinson Cavani running the show and scoring a brace to fire his team into the quarterfinals. He stuck with a lethal header off a cross from Suarez in the 7th minute to secure an early lead.
Pepe levelled for Portugal, another headed goal coming early in the second half. But it was a sweet strike from Cavani who curled one around the keeper to dump Portugal and their star Ronaldo out of the 2018 World Cup.
Tika-Taxi for Spain
Saturday’s first match saw Spain take on the host nation in what many thought would be an easy win for the 2010 champions. The game lurched to a bizarre start with a deflected ball coming off of Sergei Ignashevich’s legs as he was rugby tackling Sergio Ramos in front of the goal. A likely penalty to Spain had it not have gone in.
Russia equalised through a penalty just before half-time coming from a Gerard Pique handball in the area. Artem Dzyuba blasted it past David De Gea to level things up and so it remained for the rest of normal and extra time.
After 120 minutes of tika-taka vs the Iron Curtain defence, Russia triumphed on penalties 4-3 to send the nation into a state of frenzy. Russia now takes on Croatia on Saturday night with the nation hoping they can take another leap towards the World Cup final.
Danes couldn’t save their bacon
Denmark was the next victim to drop out of the World Cup on penalties after drawing 1-1 for nearly the entire match with Croatia on Sunday night. It was only the second time in World Cup history that both teams have scored within the first 4 minutes of a match.
Both goals came early in the game with Mathias Jorgensen scoring for the Danes within the first minute of play. However, it took less than 3 minutes for Croatia to equalise through Mario Mandzukic and that’s the way it stayed for the next 116 minutes. If you’d have popped to the loo you’d have missed all the action.
With neither team finding a breakthrough and Kasper Schmeichel saving Modric’s extra-time penalty, we got our second dose of penalty shootout drama for the day. Both keepers were on fine form but it was Danijel Subasic who saved 3 to setup a clash with Russia on Saturday.
Who’s up next?
There’s plenty more action to come with the next 8 teams fighting it out for a quarter-final spot over the next two days. Phew!
Monday 2nd July
Will Neymar and co keep the dream of winning a 6th World Cup alive or could we be on for another upset in Russia?
Can a full strength Belgium progress or will Son and Honda get the better of them?
Have the Swedes got the meatballs to make the stubborn Swiss roll-over?
Can the 3 Lions march on or will South American flair win the day?
Who will progress? You call it with Lenny. Click the matches to check out the latest World Cup odds and offers.