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FIFA World Cup 2022 Highlights: Belgium, Germany’s survival at stake on Day 12

FIFA World Cup 2022 Day 12 Highlights: Belgium also have a tough game to play against last edition’s runners up Croatia

A huge world cup trophy is illuminated by fire in the center of the pitch before the World Cup group C soccer match between Saudi Arabia and Mexico, at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2022. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

World Cup 2022 Highlights: Both Group E and F might see a huge name eliminated from the World Cup on Thursday. Germany and Belgium are both teetering on the edge with one false step enough to knock them out of the World Cup. Germany face Costa Rica at 12.30 AM while Belgium have a tough game to play against last edition’s runners up Croatia. In the other games, Japan will take on Spain while Canada face off against Morocco.

On Wednesday, Lionel Messi missed a penalty but Argentina still came away the victors over Poland. Atr the same time, Henry Martin and Luis Chaves each scored in Mexico’s furious attempt to stay alive at the World Cup, but the 2-1 victory Wednesday night over Saudi Arabia was not enough. Because of Argentina’s 2-0 victory over Poland in a simultaneous match, Mexico failed to advance out of its group for the first time since 1978.

Earlier in the day, an energetic and determined Tunisia claimed a famous victory over a France team made up mostly of back-up players, but their 1-0 win over the reigning champions was not enough for the North Africans to progress to the World Cup knockout stages. At the same time, Mathew Leckie broke the deadlock in the 60th minute and Australia advanced to the last 16 for the first time since 2006 with a 1-0 defeat of Denmark in Group D on Wednesday at Al Wakrah, Qatar.

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FIFA World Cup 2022 Day 12, Highlights: Morocco will take on Canada; Germany will be up against Costa Rica, Spain will face Japan and Belgium will lock horns against Croatia.

17:13 (IST)01 Dec 2022
What next for Italy after failing to qualify for Qatar?

Four-time champions Italy failed to qualify for this year’s World Cup in Qatar, marking the second time in a row the “Azzurri” are missing the tournament. Here is what you need to know about what comes next for the European Champions...[Read More]

16:58 (IST)01 Dec 2022
France file complaint to FIFA

France are filing a complaint to FIFA after a last-gasp equaliser by Antoine Griezmann was disallowed following a video review after the final whistle of their World Cup match against Tunisia, the French federation said on Wednesday.

16:57 (IST)01 Dec 2022
‘I can feel here that everyone wants to see Messi lift the World Cup’ : Pochettino

Lionel Messi led Argentina beat Poland 2-0 on Thursday to move into the round of 16 in the ongoing edition of the Qatar World Cup. Messi, who has scored two goals at the tournament so far, had a penalty saved but his team still beat Poland after second-half goals from Alexis Mac Allister and Julian Alvarez. Argentina wound up finishing in first place in Group C and will next play Australia — a surprise qualifier for the knockout stage. [Read More]

16:56 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Alvarez says he got carried away

Mexican boxer Canelo Alvarez apologised for publicly threatening Lionel Messi after he took offence to a dressing-room video that appeared to show the Argentine striker nudging away a Mexican jersey on the floor with his foot.

16:34 (IST)01 Dec 2022
What is ‘La Scaloneta’?

Argentine team has traditionally been called the “Albiceleste [White (alba) and Blue] for their jerseys. After a 3-0 quarter-final win over Ecuador at Copa America in 2021, a meme went viral on social media. It had Scaloni driving a van, with Messi at his side, and the rest of the team behind them. The van was decorated in the colours of Argentina’s kit, and on top of the bus was written, “La Scaloneta”. [Read More]

16:19 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Luis Chávez's words after Mexico's World Cup exit!
16:11 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Cristiano Ronaldo absent from training

Cristiano Ronaldo misses Portugal training ahead of World Cup Group H clash against South Korea.

15:47 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Alexis Mac Allister's World Cup experience!
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15:23 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Portugal looking to avoid Brazil by winning World Cup group!

Back-to-back wins. Qualification with a game to spare. Cristiano Ronaldo already among the goal scorers. The group stage could hardly have gone any better for Portugal at the World Cup.

There’s still one loose end to tie up.

Portugal needs a point in its last Group H match against South Korea on Friday to guarantee finishing in first place. That might come with a perk — avoiding Brazil in the last 16. [Read More]

15:04 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Iran's national soccer team receives subdued welcome home

Iran's national soccer team received a subdued welcome home after its World Cup defeat against the United States, a match played against the backdrop of ongoing anti-government protests in Iran. The players returned to Iran late Wednesday, a day their 1-0 loss.

Anti-government protesters, considering the team a symbol of the regime, had celebrated the loss in some Iranian cities with fireworks and cheers. Iran's treatment of the players will likely be scrutinized because they refrained from singing the country's national anthem during their opening World Cup match. Many considered the move a show of solidarity with the protests.

The team did sing the anthem in subsequent matches. The national team was received by a few dozen fans at Tehran's international airport late Wednesday, with people cheering and waving the Iranian flag. Striker Sardar Azmoun told reporters he was not satisfied with his performance in the last match. It was the sixth time Iran has participated in the World Cup. Iran was eliminated from the tournament in Qatar following the loss to the U.S. on Tuesday, in a politically charged match that saw the players scrambling to score a goal in the last remaining minutes of the game.

The protests first erupted in September, following the death of 22-year old Mahsa Amini in the custody of Iran’s morality police in the capital, Tehran. The protests quickly morphed into the most serious challenge to Iran’s theocracy since its establishment in the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Iranian authorities have blamed foreign actors, chiefly the U.S., for orchestrating the protest movement, but have provided no evidence. - AP

14:54 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Emotional Bailey Wright dedicates Australia win to mother-in-law

Australia defender Bailey Wright was grieving on Thursday, having learned after the Socceroos’ 1-0 upset of Denmark at the World Cup that his mother-in-law had died.

Wright, who plays for Sunderland in the second tier of English soccer, had told Australian reporters he had grave fears for his mother-in-law’s health after receiving a message from his wife after the match on Wednesday.

Football Australia confirmed on Thursday morning that Wright’s mother-in-law had died and the defender would not appear for media. Wright had paid an emotional tribute to his mother-in-law and wife at the stadium on Wednesday night. [Read more]

14:01 (IST)01 Dec 2022
‘We are not in crisis’: Belgium

Belgium’s Timothy Castagne said on Wednesday the team was not in crisis after two lacklustre performances in the World Cup group stage that has prompted introspection ahead of a must-win match against Croatia to reach the knockout stage. Ranked second in the world, Belgium prevailed 1-0 over Canada but were vastly outplayed, and suffered an embarrassing 2-0 defeat to Morocco in their subsequent Group F match.

“The first two games were not as good as we hoped. We didn’t show everything we are capable of,” Castagne said. “But we are not in crisis.” [Read More]

13:42 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Spain coach Luis Enrique’s twitch stream!

The 52-year old Luis Enrique, Spain’s coach, erstwhile a touch frosty with the media, has dramatically changed his reputation with open funny conversations on his daily Twitch stream from the Qatar world cup (every night 8pm Qatar time), apart from his daily shirt-less selfies on Instagram. Espn’s Sam Marsden and Alex Kirkland have translated the highlights of his conversations so far, and it looks like Enrique, a former player, is having an absolute ball with the Spanish fans. [Read More]

12:57 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Massive World Cup party at Maradona's old house
12:48 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Australia, Poland & Argentina seal spots!
12:40 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Simultaneous matches: A little more chaotic, a lot more honest

For eight consecutive days, the soccer smorgasbord that is the World Cup has unspooled at regular intervals, each match staggered to bestow it maximum importance, a full 90 minutes of splendor — plus an eon of stoppage time — on the global stage without intrusion from other games. Even if upsets abounded, a certain tidiness to the proceedings still reigned: On most of those eight days, there were four games, scheduled three hours apart, one after another after another. It was glorious, satisfying and, for those of us who crave order, rather life-affirming. [Read More]

12:15 (IST)01 Dec 2022
A must-win for Japan!
11:54 (IST)01 Dec 2022
France-born Wahbi Kharzi revels in his role of representing Tunisia!

As one of the six France-born players in the Tunisian team which started against defending champions France at the Education City stadium on Wednesday evening, 31-year-old Tunisian captain Wahbi Khazri’s solo run to score the winner in the 58th minute against the defending champions fell short of helping the former French colony nation to advance into the knock-outs.

The midfielder, who plies his trade in Ligue 1, France’s top-tier league, was playing in his second World Cup and having scored two goals and two assists in the 2018 edition, was expected to carry the small nation to knockouts this time. A 1-0 Australian win over Denmark meant that Tunisia ended their World Cup campaign but it was Khazri’s goal that was the talk of the football world on Wednesday evening. [Read More]

11:40 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Szczesny’s unusual bet with Messi!

When Lionel Messi twisted and spun on the ground to claim a penalty after Poland’s goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny’s hand grazed his face while saving a shot, the referee would rush to consult the VAR screen. In the middle, Szczesny would have a bet with Messi that it won’t be a penalty. “I told would bet him €100 that he [referee] wasn’t going to give it,” Szczesny told TV2. “So I’ve lost a bet against Messi.” The Dutch referee Danny Makkelie would award a penalty. [Read More]

11:25 (IST)01 Dec 2022
Celebrations for Australians upon reaching World Cup knockouts!

Australia hailed Graham Arnold's new 'golden generation' on Thursday and fans demanded a national holiday as the country celebrated the Socceroos' unlikely advance to the World Cup knockout phase.

Thousands gathered at Melbourne's Fed Square in the middle of the night to watch Australia's 1-0 upset of Denmark on a big screen, and were left dancing in the smoky light of flares as the Socceroos set up a last 16 clash against Argentina.

Arnold's team matched the side who made the last 16 at the 2006 World Cup in Germany but with a squad lacking the pedigree of the players from 16 years ago who came to be known as Australia's 'golden generation'.

'Tell your kids. Tell your loved ones. Tell your mates. Whisper it, yell it, scream it, put it on a T-shirt and wear it to bed. Hard work gets you places,' Australian soccer pundit Adam Peacock wrote on the Herald Sun newspaper's website.

Saudi Arabians enjoyed a national holiday to celebrate upsetting Argentina last week, and a picture of a Socceroos fan holding up a sign saying, 'Give us a public holiday', was widely shared on social media.

'Do I need to ask (Prime Minister) Anthony Albanese again to give the people a day off to celebrate?” Arnold said.

'I think there’ll be some hangovers (around the country) and some joy in the Australian team.'

The Australian prime minister offered congratulations but left the public holiday question unaddressed.

'Magnificent win by the @Socceroos #woohoo,' Albanese tweeted soon after the result.

Veteran winger Mathew Leckie's goal was declared Australia's best World Cup goal ever after he wrong-footed defender Joakim Maehle and fired low past goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel.

'From now until the end of time, it shall be referred to as 'the Leckie Goal',' Dean Bilton wrote for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

'Two words ... when uttered will send all the emotions felt in that glorious moment stirring back to the surface.'

Australians will dare to dream of a first World Cup quarter-final even with the might of Lionel Messi and Argentina in the way.

Australia's Olympic team shocked Argentina 2-0 at the Tokyo Games last year.

'In fairness, Australia and Argentina have won the same amount of FIFA World Cups since 1987,' local journalist Ned Balme tweeted.

'They’re clearly scared of us.' - Reuters

FIFA World Cup: Tunisia take down world champs France, but lose out on last-16 spot to Australia

Teammates congratulate Wahbi Khazri affter he socorred his side's opening goal against France during a World Cup group D soccer match at the Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan, Qatar, Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2022. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

The goal was Wahbi Khazri’s last touch of the ball. Fed the ball from close to the halfway line by Aissa Laidouni, he sprinted as though his life depended on it, spun and sped past the onrushing French shirts, dinked over the flailing legs of French defender Ibrahim Konate, and dribbled the ball past goalkeeper Steven Mandanda.

He lost his balance after his final goal-ward touch, and before he could scramble back to his feet, a pile of sweat-soaked white shirts covered him. He emerged out of the heap exhausted, but still had the energy to stagger towards a section of jubilant fans, who were lost for words and celebrations. He drew a heart with the hands and blew kisses at them. A thousand kisses were blown back at him. Soon after, he was substituted to loud cheers

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First published on: 01-12-2022 at 09:00 IST
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