Mali enter knockout round
African champions Mali breezed into the knockout round of the FIFA Under-17 World Cup with a dominating 3-1 win over New Zealand in their final group game in New Delhi.
Mali, the last edition's runners-up, took the lead in the 18th minute through Salam Jiddou who struck a 25-yard stunner. The first goal supplier Djemoussa Traore then turned scorer in the 50th minute as he curled in a right footer into New Zealand net from top of the box.
Lassana Ndiaye scored the third goal for Mali in the 82nd minute while Charles Spragg scored the consolation goal for New Zealand in the 72nd minute at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
Left winger Traore was a constant threat for the New Zealand defence throughout the match with his speed, ball control and deft footwork. He was supported well upfront by the likes of Jiddou, Mahamadou Samake and Hadji Drame.
Mali finished second in Group B with six points from two wins and booked a round of 16 berth. They had lost to Paraguay 2-3 in their campaign opener on October 6 in Mumbai before
beating Turkey 3-0 in their previous match.
Paraguay topped the group with an all-win record. They beat Turkey 3-1 in Mumbai in the other Group B match in Navi Mumbai.
New Zealand and Turkey ended their group engagements with one point each and failed to advance to the round of 16.
The match, played in hot conditions, was dominated by Mali who had a ball possession of 61 per cent. They fired as many as 36 shots at the goal out of which 10 were on target.
New Zealand, meanwhile, had just four shots out of which two were on target.
Paraguay outclass Turkey 3-1, top Group B
Paraguay continued to shine and recorded their third win on the trot when they thrashed a struggling Turkey 3-1 in a Group B match of the FIFA Under-17 World Cup in Navi Mumbai, on Thursday.
With this win, the South American side topped the pool with nine points.
They had defeated Mali, one of the title contenders, 3-2, and New Zealand 4-2, in their previous two games at the D Y Patil stadium.
Giovanni Bogado (41st minute), Fernando Cardozo (43rd) scored in the first half for Paraguay, while Antonio Galeano (61st) struck their third goal after the break to seal a thumping win.
Paraguay took the lead after missing a penalty.
Bogado opened the scoring with a free-kick -- the midfielder curled the ball from the spot and it zoomed into the left corner of the goal post, giving the Turkey custodian no chance.
Two minutes later, a back-heal from Cardozo did the trick for Paraguay, who went 2-0 up. On a cross from Blas Aroma, Cardozo displayed exceptional skills and flicked the ball with his left foot, which went past the goalie.
Bogado took a corner which was blocked by Turkey's defence, and Galeano shot outside the box, which deflected off Melih Gokcimen and went to the bottom right corner of the
goal, as their keeper stood on his spot. This was Paraguay's third goal.
Earlier, in the second minute, Paraguay failed to convert a penalty, awarded after Turkey defender Emirhan Civelek brought down Amora. His teammate, Anibal Vega, who scored a brace in their last game, failed to convert, as the Turkey custodian dived to his left and ensued that the South American side did not get the lead and the initial advantage.
In the 10th minute, Turkey had a chance to take go ahead, but a header from their striker Malik Karaamhet was easily saved by Paraguay goalkeeper Diego Huesca.
In the 15th minute, off a brilliant pass, Vega shot above the bar, even as both sides seemed eager to open their account.
Till their first goal, Paraguay's best chance came in the 37th minute when Amora took the ball inside the box and tried to curl one to the far post, only to see his shot miss the target.
A small break for Paraguay helped them bring back their aggression, which was missing in the first 35 minutes of play.
The South Americans surely did not miss their star players, Alan Rodriquez and Leonardo Sanchez, as the others chipped in.
Throughout the game, Turkey had their chances but, on most occasions, their players shot above the bar or wide or it was saved by the Paraguay goalkeeper.
It was only in the additional time of the second half, that Turkey's Kerem Kesgin dribbled past the opposition defenders and scored, which reduced the margin of defeat.
Colombia beat USA 3-1, qualify for knockouts
Colombia produced their best game when it mattered as they beat US 3-1 to qualify for the pre-quarterfinals of the FIFA Under-17 World Cup, in Navi Mumbai.
Desperately needing a win to push their case, Colombia scored through Juan Vidal (3rd minute), Juan Penaloza (67th) and Dieber Caicedo (87th) to seal the win and finish second in Group A behind Ghana.
US's lone goal was scored by George Acosta in the 24th minute.
US, who had earlier defeated hosts India 3-0 and Ghana 1-0, tasted their first defeat of the tournament.
This was Colombia's second win after they defeated India 2-1 in New Delhi.
With this, both US and Colombia have six points in their kitty, but Colombia finished second on goal difference and USA was pushed to the third position.