France, Spain, Portugal and Nigeria all confirm place in the last 16 of the U20 World Cup
FIFA U20 World Cup
Thursday 27 June 2013
While Spain's senior side were booking their place in the Confederations Cup Final in Brazil, their youngsters ensured they finished top of Group A in the U20 World Cup by claiming a 2-1 victory over France.
Jese was the undoubted star of the show as the forward scored one and made another for Paco Alcacer in what was a hugely impressive display from the Real Madrid man as Spain finished with a perfect record from their three games.
That meant there was a nervous wait for the French – who grabbed a late consolation through Thibaut Vion - to discover if they would progress alongside the Spaniards.
USA could've denied them second spot but they fell to a 4-1 defeat to Ghana. Ebenezer Assifuah scored twice for the Black Stars, with Frank Acheampong and Kennedy Ashia grabbing the other two goals.
The result means France go through in second-place, and Ghana have a slim chance of joining them as one of the best third-placed teams.
Group B was even tighter. Portugal knew they would top the group if they beat Cuba, and they did so in style as they scored five without reply. Bruma was the star as he scored two and made two more as Portugal ensured they will face one of the best third-placed sides in their last 16 tie.
Yet it was all on the line in the other game in the group as Nigeria knew nothing less than a win would do if they were to leapfrog Korea Republic and take second place.
They did so thanks to Olarenwaju Kayode's ninth-minute goal, who flashed home a header from Abdul Ajagun's free-kick, and they held on for the win.
Korea Republic, meanwhile, have an anxious wait to discover if they will progress as one of the best third-placed teams.