20 June 2018

Africa: 5 Shots From Day 6 - Own Goals Roll On!

Taking one for the team might not help the team

When Carlos Sanchez stuck out his hand to stop a goal bound shot reaching its target, he may have thought he was helping.

But it was very bad judgment. Colombia were less than four minutes into their opening Group H game against Japan when Shinji Kagawa fired an effort that was seemingly going to hit the target. However, Sanchez intervened and was given a straight red card for his troubles. He was the first player to be ejected this tournament. Colombia eventually lost 2-1. So the logic was?

What is it with three piece suits without the jacket?

Senegal boss Aliou Cissé was sporting two thirds of a three-piece suit during his side's game against Poland. Very natty he looked too with his specs and shock of dreadlocks. Very lion of Judah.

The Three Lions manager, Gareth Southgate, wore a similar line in clothing on day five during England's 2-1 win over Tunisia. His was a more standard haircut. But it's good to see sartorial elegance on the touchline. No more of the scruffy tracksuit. Managers need to look as good as their teams.

And so hello and goodbye Mo

Egypt's Mo Salah made his World Cup debut on day six in Egypt's 3-1 loss to Russia. Salah was injured during Liverpool's Champions League final defeat to Real Madrid in May and he was slated to play on day two in Egypt's opener against Uruguay. But he wasn't quite ready. He scored Egypt's goal from the penalty spot late in the second half.

Egypt aren't quite out yet. They need to rely on Saudi Arabia beating Uruguay and Uruguay losing to Russia in their final match while they beat Saudi Arabia to have any chance of progressing. We think it's goodbye Mo and co.

They're so freaky

Ahmed Fathi's was the fifth own goal of the tournament. It was a fearful deflection and rotten luck for the Egypt defender. Russia's Roman Zobnin thrashed a shot towards the net but it was so horribly miscued that it was heading wide. But Fathi, perhaps fearful that the ball might reach the Russia striker Artem Dzyuba who was standing just behind him, stuck a leg out to clear. But the ball flashed off his shin and past the Egypt keeper Mohamed El Shenawi. There was nothing freaky about Denis Cheryshev's goal to make it 2-0 nor Dzyuba's for 3-0.

And Fathi's came just a few hours after the Polish defender Thiago Cionek deflected the ball past his keeper Wojciech Szczesny. As the legendary British sports commentator David Coleman would have said: "Quite extraordinary."

Cleanliness is next to happiness

Following their team's 2-1 win over Poland, some Senegal supporters decided to help the staff at the Spartak Moscow Stadium by clearing up their gunk at the end of the match. http://videos.marca.com/v/0_xksniqwj-un-ejemplo-mundial-los-aficionados-de-senegal-limpian-las-gradas-tras-el-partido?count=0 This is very civic minded.

Perhaps they were inspired by Grzegorz Krychowiak's back-pass in the second half. It was horribly underhit and led to confusion between Poland goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny and defender Jan Bednarek. Senegal striker Mbaye Niang stole in and showed them a clean pair of heels to tap into the unguarded net. Japanese fans were also spotted tidying up after their side's 2-1 win over Colombia in Saransk.

The South Americans had also shown munificence. Defender Carlos Sanchez got himself sent off for deliberate handball in the fourth minute allowing Shinji Kagawa to score from the resulting penalty.

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