Home Football Japan Make History As Senegal’s World Cup Ended By The Narrowest Of Margins

Japan Make History As Senegal’s World Cup Ended By The Narrowest Of Margins

Senegal’s World Cup campaign came to an end in cruel fashion on Thursday as they fell to a 1-0 defeat to Colombia in Samara.

Aliou Cisse’s side started the day in one of the two knockout spots, and started the brighter of the two sides as they looked to top the group, but Yerry Mina’s late winner consigned them to their first (and, ultimately, last) defeat of these finals.

With Japan losing 1-o to Poland in the group’s other game, it left Japan and Senegal both on four points in the group, with nothing to separate them either in terms of goal difference or goals scored. Therefore, it was down to the teams’ fair play record to determine who qualified for the next round – a state of affairs that has seen Japan into the knockout stage by the skin of their teeth, as they have picked up four yellow cards compared to Senegal’s six.

It is the first time that a team has qualified from a World Cup group stage by these means, and it also means that there will be no African side in the knockout stage for the first time since 1982.

VOLGOGRAD, RUSSIA JUNE 28, 2018: Japan's players huddle in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Group H football match against Poland at Volgograd Arena Stadium. Anton Novoderezhkin/TASS (Photo by Anton NovoderezhkinTASS via Getty Images)

Colombia, who had to contend with the loss of talisman James Rodriguez before half time, bounced back from their opening day defeat to Japan to top the group with six points. Jose Pekerman’s side will now face the losers of England’s clash with Belgium in the last 16.

Japan, meanwhile, will face the winners of that same encounter as they celebrate emerging from the group stage for the first time since 2002.

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