Day 13 in the World Cup was an unforgettable one. Groups C and D are in the books thanks to some massive drama late in the day.
Argentina Wins Late Over Nigeria, 2-1
Argentina, a team that looked like it had no chance of moving on from the group stage of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, is back from the dead after securing a late 2-1 win over Nigeria, combined with a Croatia win over Iceland. Thanks to the two results, the South American giants finish second in Group D in what Lionel Messi and Argentina fans will remember as a small miracle.
It wasn’t a sharp showing from Argentina in a tournament where it has been very poor, but the team overcome a penalty kick equalizer from Nigeria to get a late winner from Marcos Rojo. Rojo, a defender, got the winner with a lovely right-footed finish in the 87th minute. Three points on the last matchday to put Argentina through to the knockout stage. A round of 16 matchup against France on Saturday is next for Jorge Sampaoli’s men. The loss sends Nigeria, and its amazing kits, home.
Croatia Tops Iceland, 2-1
Croatia kept its perfect record at the 2018 FIFA World Cup while sending Iceland home on Tuesday. Luka Modric and company secured a 2-1 win over the first-time participants. A late goal from Ivan Peresic ended any hope that Iceland had of making the next round. Croatia enters the round of 16 with tons of confidence as the winner of Group D over pre-tourney favorites Argentina.
After a scoreless first half that saw Iceland create a ton of chances against a team resting some of its stars, Milan Badelj of Croatia that opened the scoring in the 53rd minute. But Iceland got one back on a penalty kick in the 76th minute, as Croatia conceded for the first time in Russia 2018. It was Gylfi Sigurdsson, who missed a PK in the last game, finding the back of the net from the penalty spot. Then Perisic, in the 90th minute, went upper corner for the win.
Peru Beats Australia, 2-0
For the first time in 40 years, Peru has won a World Cup match. On Tuesday, despite already being eliminated from the competition, the South Americans finished the group stage with a 2-0 win over Australia in an emotional game that saw fans crying with joy during the national anthem.
After playing well in the first two matches but struggling in attack, Peru got things going in this one and scored a goal in each half. It was Andre Carillo’s golazo on 18 minutes that proved to be the winner. Then early in the second half, Paolo Guerrero scored with a lovely effort inside the box. A very nice performance and it builds some more positive vibes. They stuck together, didn’t give up on the final day and got three points in the cup but memories for a lifetime.
France, Denmark Draw, 0-0
France and Denmark played out a 0-0 draw at the 2018 FIFA World Cup on Tuesday to round out Group C play, giving each a beneficial point. With the point, France wins Group C with seven points, while the point for the Danes clinched a spot in the next round as the runner-up of the group.
France had more chances, including six shots on target, but both teams looked content with controlling the ball as much as they could, playing long balls deep and not really going forward with heavy numbers in attack. As a result, France will play on Saturday at 10 a.m. ET against the second-place team of Group D, which will likely be Nigeria, Argentina or Iceland. Denmark will play on Sunday, with its most likely opponent being Croatia.