News / Americas

Nigeria, Switzerland, France Advance to World Cup's 2nd Round

Nigeria's Ahmed Musa celebrates after scoring his team's second goal against Argentina during their 2014 World Cup Group F soccer match at the Beira Rio stadium in Porto Alegre June 25, 2014.
Nigeria's Ahmed Musa celebrates after scoring his team's second goal against Argentina during their 2014 World Cup Group F soccer match at the Beira Rio stadium in Porto Alegre June 25, 2014.
Mike Richman

Switzerland, France and Nigeria secured spots in the coveted round of 16 in World Cup action Wednesday in Brazil.

 

France played Ecuador to a scoreless draw in Rio de Janeiro to finish first in Group E with seven points. 

 

Afterward, Ecuador's coach Reinaldo Rueda complained about a referee's decision to dismiss Ecuadorian team captain and midfielder Antonio Valencia on a questionable red card. The red card for Valencia's challenge to France's Lucas Digne caused Ecuador to play most of the second half with 10 men.

 

With the loss, Ecuador became the only South American team not to advance beyond the group stage to the round of 16, also known as the knockout round.

 

"We lost a very important man for our structure," Rueda said. "It was difficult against France with all the virtues and abilities that team has."

 

Swiss Player Scores Three

 

In Manaus, Switzerland's Xherdan Shaqiri provided all of the scoring in a 3-0 win over Honduras that lifted the Swiss into the second round. The Swiss finished behind France with six points.    

 

Despite losing to Argentina in Group F play, Nigeria advanced to the knockout round after Iran fell to Bosnia-Herzegovina in Salvador, 3-1.

 

Wednesday's Argentina-Nigeria match in Porto Alegre was action packed from the start, with Argentine captain Lionel Messi and Nigeria's Ahmed Musa scoring in the first five minutes of play. The two scored again before a goal off Argentina's Marcos Rojo's knee remained unanswered for a 3-2 finish.

 

Argentina, which qualified for the knockout round last week, finished first in Group F with nine points, followed by Nigeria with four, Bosnia with three and Iran with one. 

 

Competition Wednesday was overshadowed by a controversy that surfaced the day before involving Uruguay's star striker, Luis Suarez.

 

On Tuesday, Suarez appeared to bite Italy's Giorgio Chiellini in the shoulder during Uruguay's 1-0 win in a Group D match that sent the Uruguayans to the knockout round.

 

The governing body of international football, FIFA, said Wednesday it is investigating the incident, which has since been the talk of the football world.

 

Urgent Matter for FIFA 

 

"I think the disciplinary committee understands the urgency of the matter," said Delia Fischer, FIFA's head of media. "It is working to get all and assess all elements in order to make a decision as early as possible, particularly given the fact that Uruguay is still in the tournament."

 

Suarez's teammates played down the incident.

 

"We're good, we're calm, we don't want to dramatize anything," Uruguay's Gaston Ramirez said. "They made too much out of it. There have been other situations that have happened during the World Cup, and I don't know why we should focus on this one.  They had their backs turned, so we didn't see anything, and for us it looks like they want to exaggerate something that happened on the pitch and ended there, that's it."

 

Suarez has had several bouts with controversy. In club play, he has been suspended twice for biting opposing players, and once for spewing racially abusive language at an opponent. He is likely to be suspended again if Tuesday's biting incident is confirmed.

 

Uruguay's next match is on Saturday against Colombia in the round of 16.  A decision by FIFA is expected before then.

 

On Thursday, group play closes with pivotal matches in Group G and Group H.

 

All four Group G teams are still bidding for spots in the knockout round.  Germany and the United States., tied for first with four points, clash in Recife.  Portugal and Ghana, with one point each, meet in Brasilia.

 

With victories in its first two games, Belgium is the only Group H team that has qualified for the round of 16.  The Belgians play South Korea in Sau Paulo, and Algeria and Russia face off in Curitiba.  Algeria is second to Belgium with three points, while South Korea and Russia have one point each.

You May Like

At International AIDS Conference One Goal, Many Paths

The 12,000 delegates attending 20th International AIDS Conference in Melbourne have vastly different visions about how to eradicate disease More

Disasters May Doom Malaysia’s Flag Carrier

Even before loss of two jets loaded with passengers on international flights, company had been operating in red for three years, accumulating deficit of $1.3 billion More

Afghan Presidential Vote Audit Continues Despite Glitches

Process has been marred by walkouts by representatives of two competing candidates, Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani More

Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Agei
X
Elizabeth Lee
July 20, 2014 2:36 AM
Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.
Video

Video Diplomatic Crisis Grows Over MH17 Plane Crash

The Malaysia Airlines crash in eastern Ukraine is drawing reaction from leaders around the world. With suspicions growing that a surface-to-air missile shot down the aircraft, there are increasing tensions in the international community over who is to blame. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Undocumented Immigrants Face Perilous Journey to US, No Guarantees

Every day, hundreds of undocumented immigrants from Central America attempt the arduous journey through Mexico and turn themselves over to U.S. border patrol -- with the hope that they will not be turned away. But the dangers they face along the way are many, and as Ramon Taylor reports from the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, their fate rests on more than just the reception they get at the US border.
Video

Video Scientists Create Blackest Material Ever

Of all the black things in the universe only the infamous "black holes" are so black that not even a tiny amount of light can bounce back. But scientists have managed to create material almost as black, and it has enormous potential use. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Fog Collector Transforming Maasai Water Harvesting in Kenya

The Maasai people of Kenya are known for their cattle-herding, nomadic lifestyle. But it's an existence that depends on access to adequate water for their herds and flocks. Lenny Ruvaga reports for VOA, on a "fog collector."

AppleAndroid

More Americas News

Texas Gov. Perry Orders State National Guard to Border

Governor says he took extraordinary measure to help secure the border, his critics say it is a political stunt
More

Cuba Hopes for More Investment as Chinese President Arrives

Chinese President Xi Jinping begins a two-day visit to Cuba on Monday evening
More

Video Addicts’ Safe Haven in Vancouver Helps Control HIV

Supervised-injection facility lowers spread of infection locally, studies show, but has critics
More

Video Shunned by Family, Haitian Orphan Finds Supportive Home

'We deal with [HIV] stigma by ... making life as normal for kids as possible'
More

Spanish Police Arrest Suspected Colombian Crime Lord

40-year-old identified as key member of violent Colombian drug cartel, one of Colombia's most wanted criminals
More

China Provides $4B to Venezuela in Exchange for Oil

Deal inked during a 24-hour visit to Venezuela by Chinese President Xi Jinping, who is on a tour of Latin America
More