Euro trio progress in Nigeria
Posted: 30 October 2009 Time: 10:24
The line-up for the Round of 16 at the Fifa Under-17 World Cup being played in Nigeria is slowly taking shape.
Yesterday, three new contenders, all European, clinched their place in the second round. To get there, Turkey needed two days, Italy two inspired halves, and Spain, two wonder goals. Almost a full day after their first match was abandoned due to a waterlogged pitch, Turkey and Costa Rica crossed swords for the second time. This time it only took the Turks three minutes to open the scoring, another early goal for Abdullah Ercan's men, who also scored quickly against Burkina Faso. The Ticos proved little match for the Europeans, whose 4-1 win boosted their goal difference and helped them assume an unassailable lead at the summit of Group D. Unlike Turkey, Italy got off to a bad start against Korea Republic. Having struggled against Algeria, they were visibly second best against the Koreans, but had the mental strength to come back from a goal behind to win 2-1. In the other Group F fixture, Uruguay also waited till the second half to make their move, winning 2-0 against an Algeria side who were as naive as they were eager to win. In Group E, two flashes of genius, one individual from Isco, and the other from a team move finished by Borja, handed Spain three points against United Arab Emirates and a place in the last 16. Adria Carmona added a clincher at the death to make it 3-1. In the afternoon, hopes were high that Malawi would feel under less pressure as they took on the USA, with the emotion of their first-ever match in a FIFA tournament behind them. Goalkeeper Cuthbert Sengwaa was clearly still on edge though, as he let a shot from Alex Shinsky slip between his legs for the only goal of the game. Yesterday’s results: Turkey 4-1 Costa Rica USA 1-0 Malawi UAE 1-3 Spain Italy 2-1 Korea Republic