The Last 16 is over and that was crazy! Here’s a look back on some of the amazing matches in the first knock out stage of the 2018 World Cup.
Top 5: England Defeats Colombia on Penalties, Advance to Quarterfinals
England are into the quarter-finals after they beat Colombia 4-3 on penalties, at the end of a pulsating encounter. Kane’s penalty had given England the lead in the second half of a tense affair before Mina headed in Cuadrado’s corner in injury time to send the tie to extra time. Both sides had their share of play in extra time but couldn’t find a winner. England looked set for another penalty elimination as Henderson’s spot-kick was saved, but Uribe hit the crossbar and Pickford kept out Bacca’s effort to swing the shootout back in England’s favour. Dier then stepped out to score the decisive penalty to set up a clash with Sweden on Saturday.
Highlights: Y. Mina 90′ +3′; H. Kane 57′ pen. FT; AET; Pen: 1-1 (3-4)
GOAL! Dier steps up and coolly fires into the bottom left corner. England win, 4-3. They are going to the quarter finals.
WHAT A SAVE! Bacca tries to go down the middle but the outstretched hand of Pickford keeps it out of the net. Advantage England.
Excellent from Trippier. He drives it into the top left. Ospina went the right way but Ospinacouldn’t reach it. 3-3.
MISSED! Substitute Uribe steps up and fires his penalty straight into the underside of the bar.
SAVED! Henderson goes to the bottom right but Ospina finds himself equal to it, parrying it wide of the right post.
Muriel sends Pickford the wrong way as he rolls the ball into the right of the goal, with Pickford diving the wrong way. 3-2 Colombia.
Rashford fires into the bottom left corner. Confident strike from the Manchester United youngster.
Juan Cuadrado (Colombia)
Cuadrado drives a powerful effort straight into the top left corner. Pickford dived the right way but he was never reaching that.
Brilliant from Kane as he rifles his shot straight into the bottom left corner. No chance for Ospina. 1-1.
Cool as you like from Falcao, he powers his penalty straight down the centre.
Top 4: Hero Neymar lifts Brazil to the Quarterfinals
Brazil secure their place in the quarter-finals for the seventh World Cup in a row thanks to second-half goals from Neymar and Roberto Firmino. The Selecao upped the ante in the second half to put Mexico under duress, and their quality in the final third was the difference between the two sides. Neymar was effective down the flank, while Willian also played his part in securing the victory. El Tri had early success, but ran out of ideas quickly as they failed to pose a threat in the second period.
Highlights: Neymar 51’; Roberto Firmino 88’
51′ GOALLLLLLLLL!!!! NEYMAR PUTS BRAZIL AHEAD!!!! 1-0!!!! The pressure from Tite’s men pays off as Neymar converts at the back post. Willian’s surge into the left inside channel caused problems for El Tri. His low drive across the face of goal missed Jesus on the slide, but Neymar was there to stab it home to hand his team the lead in the Samara Arena.
88′ GOALLLLLLLLLLL!!!! FIRMINO TAPS HOME!!! BRAZIL 2-0!!!!! Brazil are surely heading through to the quarter-finals now as Firmino converts from close range. Neymar’s bustling run into the left inside channel created the opening. He fired a low shot towards goal that was partially saved by Ochoa. However, Firmino was chasing in to tap the rebound into the net.
Top 3: Spain Are Out: Host Russia Ousted Favorites in a Huge World Cup Shock
Igor Akinfeev was Russia’s hero after saving two penalties in a shoot-out to sensationally dump Spain out of the World Cup and book the hosts a place in the quarter-finals after a 1-1 draw in Moscow.
Highlights: S. Ignashevich 11 OG; A. Dzyuba 41’ pen. FT; AET; Pen: 1-1 (3-4)
Iago Aspas (Spain)
MISS! Aspas steps up knowing that he has to score. Akinfeev produces a brilliant save with his feet to deny the forward. It was straight down the middle and the keeper stuck out a hopeful boot to make the stop. Russia are through to the quarter-finals.
Cheryshev holds his nerve from the spot as he curls his effort into the net, sending De Gea the wrong way. 3-4.
Sergio Ramos (Spain)
Ramos needs to score. He does striking his effort into the net. 3-3.
Golovin steps forward and he goes for power, blasting his effort in the middle of the goal. 2-3.
MISS! Koke becomes the first man to miss from the spot as Akinfeev gets down to make the stop. 2-2.
Ignashevich goes for the stutter step run up and he makes no mistake, converting his strike. 2-2.
Pique steps forward for Spain. He goes low with his strike and it finds the net with the aid of the post. 2-1.
Smolov fires his effort hard at goal and it needs it. De Gea gets a hand to the ball, but he cannot keep it out. 1-1.
Iniesta holds his nerve to slot his effort into the bottom corner. 1-0.
Top 2: France Outlast Argentina in a Flurry of Goals: 4-3
France are through to the quarter-finals of the World Cup after a seven-goal thriller at the Kazan Arena. Five of the goals came in an action-packed second-half. KylianMbappe well and truly announced himself as a superstar to the world with a match-winning brace. Les Bleus needed a response after falling behind to Gabriel Mercado’s deflection in the early stages of the half. It came first from Benjamin Pavard’s stunner before Mbappe took control with a brace, displaying a clinical edge in the box. Sergio Aguero set up a tense couple of minutes, but Didier Deschamps’ side held out for the win to advance to the last eight.
Highlights: A. Griezmann 13′ pen; B. Pavard 57′; K. Mbappé 64′; K. Mbappé 68′; Á. Di María 41′; G. Mercado 48′; S. Agüero 90’+3′
90′ + 3′ GOALLLLLLLLLLL!!!!! LIFE FOR ARGENTINA!!! AGUERO SCORES!!! 4-3!!There’s hope yet for Argentina as Messi conjures a brilliant cross to the back post. Aguero pulls off his man to head down towards the bottom corner, placing his effort past Lloris. Is there time for another leveller?
68′ GOALLLLLLLLL!!!!! MBAPPE AT THE DOUBLE!!!! FRANCE 4-2!!!!Mbappe provides the finish from a flowing France move, which puts his side on the brink of the last eight. Griezmann, Pogba and Giroud combined to release the forward into the right inside channel. He held his composure in the box to bury his effort beyond the reach of Armani into the bottom corner. A coming of age for Mbappe on the world stage.
64′ GOALLLLLLLLLLLL!!!! MBAPPE DRILLS HIS EFFORT HOME!!! FRANCE LEAD AGAIN 3-2!!!!Mbappe makes his mark at the World Cup with a crisp finish from close range. He twisted and turned in the box to find room for a strike in the left inside channel. He connected with his left-footed strike that snuck underneath the body of Armani and into the net. What a game we have on our hands here.
57′ GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!! PAVARD SCORES A SUBLIME STRIKE!!!! 2-2!!!!! France are back on level terms as Pavard skims a half-volley into the top corner. Hernandez was played down the left flank by Matuidi. His cross failed to connect with a team-mate in the box. Pavard collected on the edge and struck his effort first time on the bounce. He made skimming contact which helped the trajectory of the ball drift inside the post and away from the hand of Armani into the top corner. Game on!
48′ GOALLLLLLLLLLLL!!!! MERCADO DEFLECTS MESSI’S STRIKE HOME!!! ARGENTINA 2-1!!!! What a turnaround at the Kazan Arena. Argentina have the lead in the contest as France are unable to clear their lines from Banega’s cross. Messi collected at the back post and turned into space to fire at goal. His effort struck the legs of his team-mate Mercado in the six-yard box to wrong foot Lloris and the ball trickled into the net. What a moment in the game.
41′ WHAT A GOAL!!!!!! DI MARIA EQUALISES!!!!! 1-1!!! Argentina are back in the game courtesy of a stunner from Di Maria. The winger picks up the ball in the middle of the park and pulls the trigger on his left boot from 35 yards. His effort has the power and curl to arc away from the hand of Lloris into the top corner. A special strike from the PSG man to get his side back into the game.
13′ GOALLLLLLLLL!!!!! GRIEZMANN CONVERTS!! FRANCE 1-0!! Les Bleus take the lead as the striker holds his nerve from the spot, calmly stroking his effort into the bottom corner. Armani went a fraction too early and was punished by the composure of Griezmann.
Top 1: Most Stunning Comeback: Belgium Rally From 0-2 Down to Defeat Japan: 3-2
Belgium have secured a date against Brazil in the quarter-finals, while Japan can return home with their heads held high. We may have just seen one of the best World Cup games of all time!
What a game. Japan looked set for another stunning World Cup shock as they stormed into a 2-0 lead at the start of the second half but Belgium rallied superbly. Roberto Martinez made the changes necessary and got the result he wanted. Heartbreak for Japan, who were superb, and they fall at the round-of-16 stage again.
Highlights: J. Vertonghen 69′; M. Fellaini 74′; N. Chadli 90’+4′; G. Haraguchi 48′; T. Inui 52′
90′ + 4′ GOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!!! BELGIUM LEAD 3-2! What an incredible end to an incredible match! The Red Devils hit on the counter with the last kick of the game. De Bruyne charges through the middle, rolls a ball out wide to Meunier and the low cross is brilliantly left by Lukaku and Chadli has the goal at his mercy.
74′ GOOOOOOOAL! 2-2! Belgium equalise! Hazard curls a superb cross into the middle where Fellaini, off the bench, rises above the Japan defence to head home.
69′ GOAAAAAL! 2-1! Belgium get one back! Japan fail to deal with a corner and Vertonghen loops a superb header over the head of Kawashima and into the far corner. Game on!
52′ GOOOOOAL! Unbelievable! Japan lead 2-0! Kagawa collects the ball on the edge of the box and pokes a pass back to Inui, who shapes up to shoot and fires an unstoppable effort into the bottom right-hand corner.
48′ GOOOOOAL! 1-0! Japan take the lead! Vertonghen fails to cut out Shibasaki’s through ball and Haraguchi latches onto the end of the pass, firing a driven shot into the far corner of the net beyond Courtois’ reach.