What you need to know about the knockout stages of the World Cup?

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The Canadian national team participated in the men’s World Cup for the first time in the last 36 years finished, but football’s biggest show goes on. Today, after the end of the group matches, the couples who will compete in the round of 16 will be determined. If you’ve been laser-focused on Team Canada or just need a quick refresher, here’s a little bit about each game.


10:00 a.m. USA vs Netherlands: American prodigy Christian Pulisic is on his way to playing after suffering a painful “pelvic contusion” while scoring the goal in the United States’ 1-0 win over Iran on Tuesday. The Americans will be hoping to reach their first quarter-final in 20 years as they face an underdog Dutch side to win the soft A pool.

Argentina vs. 2pm Australian time: Lionel Messi’s last chance to escape Diego Maradona’s shadow (at least for a minute) threatened to go down in flames after Argentina lost their opening game to Saudi Arabia in one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history. However, Argentina, ranked third, recovered to beat Mexico and Poland to win Group C. They will have to overcome Tunisia and Denmark to reach the semi-finals of the European Championship for the first time since 2006.


10 a.m. ET France vs. Poland: Like Canada in Olympic hockey, France is so deep in soccer talent that the B team is sometimes said to be a World Cup contender. However, many were defending champions due to numerous injury layoffs (including the world’s best player, Karim Benzema) and the internal struggles that have always plagued this team. But superstar Kylian Mbappe’s three goals (tied for the tournament lead) twice before the French lost 1-0 to Tunisia did not stop France from winning their group. Poland’s Robert Lewandowski, his country’s greatest player in history, scored his first goal at the World Cup against Saudi Arabia in 2018 after going three games without a goal.

England vs. Senegal at 2 p.m. ET: England, who reached the final of the European Championship last year, look like they will compete for the World Cup for the first time since 1966. Marcus Rashford led the way with three goals as the Three Lions thrashed Iran and Wales 9-2. For the Group B winners, they were tied on points with Team USA. Senegal qualified from Group A friendly despite Sadio Mane’s injury.


10:00 a.m. ET Japan vs. Croatia: The 24th-ranked Japanese, who are quietly sending more and more players to Europe’s top leagues, are the most pleasant surprise of this World Cup. They beat old world powers Germany and Spain to win Group E and send the Germans home. Croatia advanced to the 2018 World Cup finals with a 4-1 win over Canada, with Ballon d’Or winner Luka Modric maintaining a formidable midfield.

Brazil vs. South Korea at 2 p.m. ET: It wasn’t until almost half-time in Brazil’s third that they allowed a shot on goal. A 1-0 loss to Cameroon today gave Brazil the chance to win Group G, but the World Cup favorites’ stifling defense and endless depth helped them overcome the absence of superstar forward Neymar, who is sidelined indefinitely with an ankle injury. Korean fans and players were left in tears today as they beat Portugal 2-1, which was enough to see off Uruguay after they failed to score a third goal against Ghana. The 2-0 final saw Ghana avenge their loss to Uruguay in the 2010 quarter-finals after Luis Suarez (playing here) made a deliberate volley to save a goal in extra time. Read more about the Uruguay v Ghana revenge match from Chris Jones in Qatar.


10:00 a.m. ET Morocco vs. Spain: The 22nd-ranked Moroccans stole Group F for the first time since 1986 with wins over Belgium and Canada. They were selected in the world’s world for the first time for the first time in the Arab world. Spain looked impressive in their opening game, thrashing Costa Rica 7-0, but scored just two goals (just one point) in games against Germany and Japan to finish second in that tough group.

Portugal vs. Switzerland at 2 p.m. ET: Amid rumors that he may join the Saudi club for $120 million in a year, Portuguese icon Cristiano Ronaldo became the first man to score in five World Cups. Today’s disappointing loss to South Korea didn’t stop Ronaldo and company from winning Group H. Today, the Swiss national team won the second place in Group G after beating Serbia 3:2.

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