Ecuador, still having a chance for qualification, couldn’t get the better of France, who has now gone through top of Group E. But with Switzerland also getting the result they needed, a win for the South American side still meant they couldn’t go through. A highlight moment of the match saw Ecuadorian captain Antonio Valencia get sent off in the 50th minute as the European side opened up their attack. However, to no avail, the Frenchmen were unable to take advantage of their 10-man opponents, with both teams providing a few chances apiece.
Antonio Valencia picks up a straight red after impact from an unnecessary follow through.
In a game Switzerland knew they needed goals, Liverpool target Xherdan Shaqiri answered with an amazing hat-trick, putting the Swiss into the knock-out stages at the expense of Honduras. Swiss forward Josep Drmic also played a big part, assisting the latter two goals to provide Shaqiri with the opportunities. No doubt who the match ball goes to however.
Shaqiri’s first goal
Shaqiri’s hat-trick goal
Undoubtedly the game of the night, a Lionel Messi inspired Argentina just about saw off a very competent Nigeria side in an end to end encounter. The Argentineans went ahead twice through Messi but the Africans equalized almost instantly each time through Ahmed Musa. Marcos Rojo got the winner in the 51st minute from a corner and the South Americans held on to the result. In the end however, both teams progressed to the knockout stages.
Musa scores to make it 1-1
Messi’s free-kick to make it 2-1
Although Bosnia-Herzegovina could do nothing about their World Cup hopes, they instead dealt a fatal blow to Iran’s hope of qualification. A well placed first half goal from Edin Dzeko gave his side the lead before Miralem Pjanic made it 2-0 with just about 30 minute left to play. The Iranians were not going to give up their dreams that easily as Reza Ghoochannejad gave his side a glimmer of hope by tapping in a close ranged effort. However, against the run of play, a counter attack from Avdija Vrsajevic finish off the game as the Bosnian man sent the ball into the back of the net.
Reza Ghoochannejad gave Iran hope by scoring a close ranged opportunity.
Avdija Vrsajevic finished off the game by scoring his team’s third goal of the match.