Senegal cruelly knocked out courtesy of defeat to Colombia

Senegal cruelly knocked out courtesy of defeat to Colombia

Senegal cruelly knocked out courtesy of defeat to Colombia

As it stands, Japan and Senegal have the advantage, with four points after two games.

In a thrilling group climax, a Poland goal in Volgograd was sending both teams in Samara to the last 16, but Yerry Mina's 74th-minute header provided a decisive twist, ensuring Jose Pekerman's men triumphed and Senegal, by virtue of their yellow-card tally, were ousted.

Colombia will face the runners-up of Group G, either England or Belgium, who face off later on Thursday and whose ranking will also be decided via fair play should they draw.

Japan lost 1-0 to already-eliminated Poland in the group's other fixture.

Senegal were the last remaining African side in the competition and their elimination means that there will be no African team in the second round of a World Cup for the first time since 1982.

An open start had seen deliveries at either end wasted but Senegal's Khadim Ndiaye was the first goalkeeper worked when Juan Quintero's 13th-minute free-kick needed pushing round the post.

Today Badou and Idrissa Gueye need to be far more diligent in their shielding and harrying work and Mane has to make better runs beyond the centre-forward, particularly if they go for a 4-3-3.

Senegal had been heading through until the 74th minute when Mina rose to meet a corner and sent a bullet header into the net.

The first flashpoint came soon after when Sanchez stretched in the box to thwart Mane, referee Milorad Mazic pointing to the spot but then overturning the decision when replays revealed a fine recovery tackle.

News of Jan Bednarek's goal for Poland gave a lift to fans of both Colombia and Senegal as the tension levels in Samara continued to rise.

The 2018 FIFA World Cup lives of Senegal and Colombia are on the line.

After years of struggling to progress to the latter stages, James Rodriguez's tournament-topping six goals steered Colombia to their best ever finish of the quarter-finals in Brazil four years ago.

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