Senegal 0-1 Colombia: World Cup 2018 Group H, game 3
A Yerry Mina header in the second half was enough to see Colombia through to the last 16 as Group H leaders as Senegal crash out of the World Cup. The USA vs. Ecuador live and direct: Friendly FIFA Date
Senegal 0-1 Colombia: match report
Colombia started the day sitting third in Group H but by the time referee Milorad Mazic blew the final whistle at Samara Arena, they were sitting above all of their rivals and on top of the world. The unlikely set of events that saw them finish at the top of their group did not occur without controversy though.
In the opening half, Senegal looked like they had a penalty and a chance to consolidate their early dominance. Sadio Mane was pulled down by Davinson Sanchez and the referee pointed to the spot. After a quick VAR review, however, the referee admitted his flaw and changed his mind.
James Rodriguez was subbed off in the first half too to compound Colombia's struggles. The quartet in attack of James, Falcao, Cuadrado and Quintero couldn't get into the game and Colombia were suffering because of it.
In the second half, it was all Senegal too despite los cafeteros increasing the intensity. The more desperate they became, they more wild their attacking looked. Meanwhile, Senegal were looking more dangerous on the counter and had their destiny in their own hands.
Elsewhere, however, Poland took the lead against Japan and everything was thrown up into the air. Senegal were now top and Colombia second. That was before Yerry Mina rose to meet a corner as he drove it home. Colombia were now going through as group leaders and Senegal were going home given their yellow card count - they had six and Japan had four.
They did huff and they did puff as the clock wound down but it was to no avail. The tables had turned and so had the momentum and they had no way of reversing it. They launched ball after ball into the box but they were rejected at every cross.
As it ended, video footage beamed in of Japan watching the last couple of seconds after their game had finished. In the end, it will be Colombia and Japan who continue in the competition and Senegal, who were possibly most likely to go through at the start of the day, are out after a hectic last 15 minutes at Samara Arena.
Senegal vs Colombia live online: as it happened
Senegal vs Colombia: World Cup Group H preview
Senegal face Colombia in the final round of Group H matches today (16:00 CEST), in a clash that sees both sides not only gunning for knockout-stage qualification, but also still in the hunt to top their pool.
The Africans head into the match in Samara in second - with leaders Japan only ahead by virtue of their superior fair-play record - while the Colombians are a point behind in third.
A last-16 tie with either Belgium or England awaits the two teams to progress from Group H.
With Egypt, Morocco, Nigeria and Tunisia all exiting Russia 2018 at the first hurdle, Senegal are now the only African side left in the competition.
Not since back in 1982 has Africa had no representatives in the second round of a World Cup finals, so it is down to Aliou Cissé's men to preserve that 36-year record.
And the Teranga Lions, whose coach has a full complement of players available to him, will go through as group winners if they better Japan's result against the already-out Poles.
Colombia endured a nightmare start to their World Cup campaign in their opener against Japan, when Carlos Sánchez's early red card - for conceding a penalty that the Samurai Blue duly converted - left them down to 10 men for almost the entirety of a match they went on to lose 2-1.
However, Los Cafeteros then bounced back in style on Sunday, putting themselves right back in contention to qualify from Group H with a comprehensive 3-0 triumph over Poland.
José Pekerman's side now take on Senegal knowing that a victory will guarantee a last-16 spot, and that they can even top the group if they win and Japan fail to take all three points from their game.
Sánchez is available for selection once more after serving a one-match ban for his sending-off, while Mateus Uribe is in line to deputise for Abel Aguilar, who was stretchered off in the win over Poland.