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List of Articles by Salvador Lopez

FIFA World Cup Udate: Cast for the KO Phase to Be Completed Today

By Salvador Lopez
26 Jun 2014

The cast of teams for the knock-out phase of the current FIFA World Cup being held in Brazil is set to be competed today with the playing of the four remaining matches.

In Group G which can also be known as the “Group of Death”, Portugal is pitted against Ghana whilst the USA is up against powerhouse Germany.

All four teams are still in the running for a spot in the next round, at least mathematically. Portugal with Cristiano Ronaldo in its line up would need, not only a victory, but a decisively wide margin against Ghana before entertaining any hopes of advancing. This is due to the team’s poor goal differential (-4), thanks to the 0-4 defeat against Germany in its first match. Ghana, with its goal differential of -1, likewise needs to win by a considerable margin and hope for a USA loss against Germany to qualify. A draw result of either matches would bring Germany and USA into the next phase.

Germany with its currently superior goal differential (+4) is almost certain to advance to the knock-out phase and only a really sound drubbing from the USA which is highly unlikely would prevent that. USA with its +1 goal differential can still afford to lose and advance but only if by a narrowest of margin and that the score in a Ghana or Portugal victory is not decisive enough to overtake it. Interestingly enough, the Germany and USA match would pit the coaches who were previously sitting on the same bench. In the 2006 World Cup, current USA coach Juergen Klinsmann and German coach Joachim Loew teamed up together to stir Germany to the semi-finals.

In Group H, South Korea is playing front-running Belgium whilst Algeria is pitted against Russia. Belgium has already qualified for the next round whilst the three other teams are still contesting for the other spot where everything is still possible. A win by Algeria would mean outright qualification whilst a win by either Russia or South Korea would still depend on the matches’ scores.

So far, the teams already qualified for the knock-out phase are as follows:

In yesterday’s matches, Nigeria managed to advance despite its 2-3 defeat to Argentina following a loss by Iran to Bosnia and Herzegovina (1-3), The Argentina-Nigeria match was a record in itself as it was the first time two opposing teams scored a goal each in the first five minutes of the game, courtesy of Lionel Messi and his counterpart, Musa, known as “Nigerian Messi”. The two players went on to score another goal each with the winning margin provided by the Argentine Rojo.

In Group E, Switzerland qualified after defeating Honduras 3-0 whereas Ecuador could only manage a 0-0 draw against France.

Photo: Switzerland's Xherdan Shaqiri (C) scored three goals Wednesday to beat Honduras, 3-0, and powered his team to the final 16 knockout phase of the FIFA World Cup in Rio de Janiero in Brazil.

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