World Cup: Who’s in, who’s out and who can still go through
Ten teams have secured spots in the knockout stage at the World Cup after the chaotic conclusion of Tuesday’s matches. Ten teams have been eliminated. Twelve teams still have a chance. With four groups finished and four still playing, here’s a look at who’s in, who’s out and possible scenarios at the World Cup.
Uruguay locked up first place with a 3-0 win Monday over Russia, which advanced anyway after winning its first two matches. Uruguay will play Portugal on Saturday in Sochi. Russia takes on Spain on Sunday at Luzhniki Stadium, the larger of the two Moscow venues. Egypt and Saudi Arabia have been eliminated.
Spain emerged atop the group after simultaneous, frenetic finishes in the night games on Monday. Spain got a late equalizer in a 2-2 draw with Morocco and Portugal had a 1-1 draw with Iran. The 2010 World Cup champion Spaniards will play the host Russians to start the knockout stage, while reigning European champion Portugal will play Uruguay. Morocco and Iran have been eliminated.
France won the group after a 0-0 draw with Denmark on Tuesday, finishing with two wins and a tie. With the draw, the Danes also advance with five points. Peru finished third after defeating Australia 2-0 on Tuesday, while the Aussies finish last with just a single point through their three games. France will face Argentina, the second-place team from Group D, in the Round of 16. Meanwhile, Denmark will play top-seed Croatia.
Croatia defeated Iceland 2-1 on Tuesday, finishing on top of Group D with a perfect 3-0 record. Argentina staved off heartbreak in the form of a Marcos Rojo goal in the 86th minute against Nigeria. With the 2-1 win, Argentina secures second place in the group. Nigeria (third) and Iceland (fourth) are eliminated. Argentina will face France in the last 16, while Croatia will take on Group C runners-ups Denmark.
Brazil and Switzerland have four points apiece, Serbia has three, and any of them could grab one of the group’s two spots in the knockout stage. Serbia meets Brazil on Wednesday, likely needing a win. Switzerland plays Costa Rica at the same time. Costa Rica has been eliminated.
Mexico leads with six points but isn’t safe yet. If defending champion Germany defeats South Korea on Wednesday and Sweden simultaneously tops Mexico, three teams would finish with six points, sending it to tiebreakers that start with the best goal differential. If Mexico and South Korea win, Mexico would top the group and the other three teams would be equal on three points.
Belgium and England play each other Thursday to determine who wins the group and who finishes second. Tunisia and Panama are out of contention.
Japan and Senegal lead the group with four points apiece. Colombia has three and would advance if it beats Senegal, and both could go through with a draw if Japan loses. Poland is eliminated.