The World Cup Round of 16 moved on and showcased two more matchups on Sunday that had some European powers and the champions of Africa. France took on Poland, and England faced off against Senegal!
World Cup Round of 16: France and England on to quarter-finals
World Cup Round of 16: France 3 – 1 Poland
France and Poland played in a very open match to the surprise of many. Heading into this quarter-final, France was a team playing well, and Poland was not. Poland almost backed into the World Cup knockout rounds, and when they knew they’d play France, it was thought to be all she wrote for their tournament. This was not the case.
Poland held their own against France for most of the first half warding off French attacks, but they couldn’t keep them out for the entire half. Oliver Giroud put home a brilliant goal off a Kylian Mbappe assist just before halftime. With the 1-0 lead heading into the second half, France went for the kill. Poland would try to make changes but they didn’t help in defending what could be the best player at the past two World Cups.
Kylian Mbappe is only 23 but has already won the World Cup, and looks poised to lead his nation to another trophy in 2022. He’s played only 11 World Cup matches but has nine goals! Two of which he scored in the second half against Poland. He struck in the 74th minute with a thunderbolt of a shot, and then again in the 90th minute to make it 3-0. Poland would find a consolation goal thanks to a Robert Lewandowski penalty in the 90+9th minute.
The match ended and France move on to the quarter-finals, while Poland was knocked out.
World Cup Round of 16: England 3 – 0 Senegal
The second match of this past Sunday saw 2018 semi-finalists England take on the AFCON champions Senegal. Ahead of the match, it was thought that this one would be an even affair with a lot of back-and-forth possession play between the two sides. From the start of this match, it was clear that England was going to control the game, and that Senegal greatly missed injured and suspended players.
The English held the majority of possession and looked to work a way through the strength of Senegal’s team which is their defensive structure. After 37 minutes they finally found a breakthrough. Phil Foden found himself with space and time to pick a pass into Senegal’s box, and he found the run of Jordan Henderson. Hendo made the most of a big chance netting a goal to crush Senegal’s chances of staying in the match. On the stroke of halftime, a danger was plunged by England.
Foden again was able to be on the ball and run at the Senegal back line. He was able to find a man who had yet to score at the 2022 World Cup, Harry Kane. Kane put his first goal away to give England a 2-0 lead before halftime. Just on the other end of halftime Foden again found a dangerous place to operate. This time he found the run of Bukayo Saka who finished tho game off with 33 minutes to spare.
England advance to the quarter-finals, while Senegal will rue their missed chance to make a knockout run.
France vs England in the quarter-finals
It’s a matchup for the ages with a whole lot of history behind it. The reigning World Champions France take on the three lions of England for a place in the 2022 World Cup semi-finals! France has looked like the best team in the tournament in some matches, and England has too. Who will come out on top?
- Kickoff time: Saturday, Dec. 10, 2 pm ET
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Mandatory Credit: Xinhua/Imago/Icon Sportswire