The surprise of the tournament so far, beating the sending home of Roy Keane and the signing of Camachín as Spain's team mascot! World and European champions France are beaten by debutantes Senegal thanks to a first half scrambled goal from Pape Bouba Diop (sounds like a crossword clue rather than a footballer). Lots of close efforts but no more goals, with Trezeguet and Henry hitting the woodwork for France and Diouf hitting the bar for the Africans. Have we seen the end of the current generation of 'les bleus'?
Spanish league players: Zidane was injured in a warm up game and missed this match. After this defeat there will be a rush to try and get him fit for Thursday's game against Uruguay, although he is still doubtful. Makelele and Christanval were non-playing substitutes.
France's defeat leaves this group wide open, and the two teams line up with more hope. Uruguay scraped in to the World Cup by the back door and missed out on the last World Cup completely, but are expected to do well. Denmark though are using the wings well, and Tomasson pokes home the first goal from Gronkjaer's cross on the stroke of half time. Left back Rodríguez strikes a spectacular equaliser after the break, but Tomasson gets his second from a late header, again from a cross in from the left wing by Jorgensen, to take Denmark top of the group. The game between France and Uruguay on Thursday will be a classic, with the loser going out. Nobody will be taking prisoners.
Spanish league players: Darío Silva was the only one to start the game, and despite an injury scare in the first half he played the full 90 minutes. He was however disappointing and was given little chance by an organised Danish defence. He lined up alongside Sebastian Abreu, who is on Deportivo's books and is rumoured to be joining the squad next season after playing in Mexico. Regueiro came on for the last ten minutes and showed some nice touches down the left wing. Gato Romero was tipped to be one of the sensations of the World cup but he didn't even get on, and neither did De los Santos or Nico Olivera. A waste of good talent.
A hot day in Daegu in more ways than one, with the match kicking off in temperatures of around 33ºC and sprits running high on both sides. With so much at stake nerves were on edge in the opening minutes, and when Helveg went in hard on Fadiga the midfielder retaliated and started off a small riot. Guatemalan referee Carlos Bartres had to calm things down, but a few minutes later he had to intervene when Diao brought down Tomasson in the area, awarding a penalty to the Danes which Tomasson himself converted for his third goal of the tournament. And the striker could have made it four if Bartres had not ruled out another goal for a non-existent hand ball a few minutes later. Senegal came back though with a couple of isolated chances before the break, but a confident Sorensen and a solid defence ably lead by Tofting were able to keep them at bay.
It was a different story after the restart though, and one imagined that Senegal's witch doctor had given them some sort of magic tonic to inspire them. Within seven minutes they had drawn level with one of the best goals of the competition, winning the ball in defence and moving it upfield with a string of rapid passes before Diao, charging the length of the field, got on to the end of Fadiga's pass to beat the keeper. Fading under the intense heat and humidity Denmark were forced back, and only a bad miss by Souleymane Camara let them off the hook. However the Africans were reduced to ten men when their goalscorer Diao got sent off for hacking down Henricksen, and both sides settled for a draw in the end.
Spanish league players: None.
France and Uruguay kept their hopes alive of reaching the next round after the first goalless draw of the competition. It was a hard fought and at times ugly match, with France's Thierry Henry getting himself sent off midway through the first half for a late challenge on Romero and others, especially Darío Silva, lucky to get away with similar tackles. The Europeans were still missing Zinedine Zidane, and they lost Frank De Boeuf to an injury with only a quarter of an hour on the clock.
Recoba was Uruguay's danger man, and he brought a reaction save out of Barthez with a deflected shot early on. Petit hit the outside of the post with a free kick at the other end ten minutes before the interval, but it was Recoba again who should have scored soon after the break, finding Barthez again with a first effort and then rushing his shot and missing an empty net a few minutes later. Carini saved well from Trezeguet and then from a Micoud free kick near the end, and Wiltord for France and Magallanes for Uruguay both went close in the last two minutes.
Both sides had to settle for a point though, which means that they will have to win their respective last games by a two goal margin to stay in the competition, France against Denmark and Uruguay against Senegal.
Spanish league players: Zidane did not recover from his injury in time for this match and was not even on the substitutes' bench. Christanval and Makelele were amongst the replacements though, but like Olivera and Regueiro in the other dugout they did not participate in the game at all. Darío Silva started up front alongside Abreu for Uruguay but was taken off, much to his disappointment, on the hour mark. His team mate at Málaga Romero also started for the first time in this World cup, being replaced with twenty minutes to go by Valencia's De los Santos.
Reigning champions France are out of the World cup! Another defeat at the hands of Denmark leaves them on the early plane home, bottom of their group having only picked up one point and failing to score even once in their three matches. Needing only a draw, Danish manager Morten Olsen took a bit of a risk, leaving out one of his star players Ebbe Sand to put out a five man midfield. With Zinedine Zidane returning for France though he needed to do something to snuff out the Real Madrid superstar, and the ploy worked as Zidane's creative talent was not allowed to shine through under the disciplined Danish defence.
France's plight got worse midway through the first half when Tofting found Rommdahl with a lifted pass for him to slot the ball wide of Barthez. France now had to score three times, and Trezeguet brought a good save out of Sorensen before Zidane curled a shot just over the bar. Fate was against them though, and Desailly sent a header crashing against the bar soon after the restart. Then Denmark struck again, their top scorer Tomasson getting his fourth of the competition with relative ease after Desailly slipped as he ran in to challenge.
France knew then that this was not going to be their year, and after Sorensen was let off the hook when Cissé's shot span out of his hands around the far post, Trezeguet saw his header bounce down off the bar and away. The Juventus striker let slip a wry smile, knowing it was all over. They become the first reigning champions since Brazil in 1966 to be knocked out in the group stage. Denmark finish first, and go marching on to the second round. Who would have thought that a fortnight ago?
Spanish league players: Zidane finally made his first appearance in this World cup, and although he was still not 100% he did have his moments. His Real Madrid team mate Makelele also made his debut in place of the suspended Petit, but Barcelona's Christanval ended his first ever World cup without playing even a minute.
What a game and what a finish! New boys Senegal appeared to have things wrapped up with three goals in a whirlwind twenty minutes in the first half, but Uruguay came back to level the scores in the second half and almost snatched a winner at the end. Uruguay had to win this game, and they threw caution to the winds early on. However they were caught out on a quick breakaway when the usually reliable Montero let through Djouf, and Dutch referee Jan Wegereef awarded a dubious penalty as the striker fell under the challenge from Carini. Fadiga calmly tucked away the kick, and five minutes later the Africans went two up when the man who got the goal against France, Papa Bouba Diop, came from behind to meet a cross in from Henri Camara and strike a shot wide of Carini. It was not all over even then though, and incredibly Papa Bouba Diop scored again before half time, setting off from what looked like a marginally offside position to volley Fadiga's cross into the net off the crossbar.
Needing a miracle, Uruguay manager Víctor Púa made a double change at the break, bringing on Morales and Forlan, and it couldn't have worked out better. Straight from the kick off Morales pulled one back after Sylva had saved from his almost namesake Darío Silva, and midway through the second half Forlan reduced the gap to one when he volleyed spectacularly into the top corner of the net. Game on again, and Recoba and Morales both went close as the game moved into the closing minutes.
Then with two minutes to go Morales fell somewhat prematurely under the challenge from Beye, and Wegereef pointed once again at the spot. Recoba stepped up to make it all square, and collected the ball quickly from the back of the net. Uruguay surged forward again, and Varela fired in a shot at goal which Diatta could only head straight up in the air. Sylva was committed, and Morales had a free header at goal. But with the ground suddenly silent and time apparently going into slow motion, the striker lost his bearings and put it wide. The final whistle went, and another ex World champion was out, Púa offering his resignation after the match. Senegal survive to finish second in the group, and will face the winners of the so called 'group of death' next Sunday. A triumph for Africa at last.
Spanish league players: Darío Silva failed to live up to his reputation, and goes out of the World cup without scoring a goal. His Málaga team mate Romero started the game, but was one of the players sacrificed at the break to bring on an extra forward. Racing's Regueiro came on with half an hour gone for Sorondo, and once again De los Santos and Nico Olivera didn't get a game.