Day three of the 2018 World Cup saw Leo Messi try to recreate Cristiano Ronaldo’s heroics from Day 2. Croatia took on a Nigeria side that everyone saw as underdogs to qualify from Group D. Plus Group C action with France taking on Australia and Denmark taking on a Peru side that haven’t been seen at a World Cup since 1982.
France 2 Australia 1
France very nearly hit a snag in the opening game of this four-game super Saturday. A valiant performance from Australia very nearly won them at least a point against a French team that is expected to go extremely deep in this year’s competition.
France opened the scoring through an Antoine Griezmann penalty, the first in World Cup history to be given using Video Assistant Refereeing.
The Atletico forward put his penalty away with ease and France looked set to push on and get all three points before Australia were awarded a penalty of their own. No VAR needed this time! Australia’s captain, Mile Jedinak slotted home his penalty to tie the game at 1-1.
France’s second game via Goal Line Technology. Paul Pogba’s deflected shot ruled to have crossed the line thanks to the revolutionary tech.
The 2-1 loss to France has condemned Australia to four consecutive World Cup defeats. For the first time in their history.
Argentina 1 Iceland 1
The smallest nation to ever compete at the World Cup. Playing against Lionel Messi and the rest of his star-studded Argentine squad, no-one gave the mini-Nordic nation a chance. Oh, how they prove people wrong.
Building on their historic Euro 2016 campaign that started with a draw against eventual champions Portugal. Plus an infamous win against England in the knockout stages, Iceland are quickly becoming the darlings of International football.
It wasn’t all plain sailing for them, though. Sergio Aguero put Argentina ahead just inside the first 20 minutes of the game. To their credit, though, instead of letting their head’s drop, the Icelandic’s managed to conjure up a response just four minutes later, with Alfred Finnbogason equalising.
Iceland’s movie maker / goalkeeper, Hannes Þór Halldórsson is largely responsible for keeping them in the game. His heroics separated them from a heavy defeat and a grinded out draw.
This was also Iceland’s first ever World Cup game, hence the
ir first ever point.
Peru 0 Denmark 1
RassenballSport Leipzig’s own Yussuf Poulsen got the only goal as Denmark squeezed past Peru in the opening game in their group. He took the ball well and slotted a finish underneath the Peruvian goalkeeper to give the Danes all three points.
Peru were, mostly, the better side. They had way more chances than their opponents and Denmark didn’t really get going despite having some undeniable talent in their squad in the shape of Christian Eriksen.
Peru are now win-less at the World Cup since 1978, with their last victory coming in the form of a 4-1 victory over Iran.
Croatia 2 Nigeria 0
Going into the tournament with one of the most undeniably stylish football kits in World Cup history, Nigeria were the dark horses to qualify from their group. They left every hopeful bitterly disappointed. All by giving the worst display of any side at the year’s World Cup so far.
Croatia weren’t at all as good as they were supposed to be either, the poor level of the Nigeria squad made them look much better than they actually were. An own goal and a penalty saw the Croats score their two goals with Luka Modric scoring the latter.
And that’s pretty much it for today, nothing to write home about in the later two games of the day and all focus on the Argentina and France, stay tuned to The Anfield Talk for all your World Cup coverage.