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World Cup U-20 2017

FIFA U-20 World Cup: Zambia Advances to the Next Round After a Splendid Comeback

A stunning comeback by the Young Chipolopolo saw them qualify for the next round after coming from two down to beat Iran 4-2. Zambia’s shaky defense had put them in a dangerous spot earlier in the game as Mangani Banda’s miscued clearance fell straight to Reza Shekari, who, after a neat step-over, sent Iran in front.

Zambia’s closest chance came when Fashion Sakala rattled the post with a fine header on the stroke of half-time. The rash challenge on Omid Norafkan gifted Iran a penalty that Shekari sent the ball home, putting the African Champions 2 goals behind.

But the tide shifted in the second half in favor of Zambia, after the ball found Fashion Sakala who had cut inside, to volley it low. Enock Mwepu later drew level with possibly the goal of the tournament.

Zambia did not intend to slow down as they fiercely attacked, scoring the third goal through Emmanuel Banda followed by a stunning match-winner from Patson Daka who sent a shot 20 yards out, in the bottom corner of the post.

In the other group matches, South Africa continued to drop in performance after suffering two defeats, losing the second game 2-0 to Italy and an elimination after two losses. The Amajita will play their final Group D game against Uruguay

In Group A, Guinea picked up its first point of the campaign after drawing 1-1 with England. However, it was all England’s undoing after squandering a second-half lead with a bizarre own goal from Fikayo Tomori. The Chelsea-owned player sent a blind back pass which strolled right into the back of the net.

Unbeknownst to him, Tomori was unaware of goalkeeper Dean Henderson’s strayed position from his goal post, granting Guinea its first point of the tournament. Guinea had failed to make the most of its chances and could have taken all three points through Alseny Soumah save for Henderson denying him a glorious opportunity.

In Group F, Senegal will need to capitalize on its 2-0 opening win against Saudi Arabia. Goals from Ibrahima Niane and Cavin Diagne secured the side three points and will need maximum points when it faces United States today to top the group. The Senegalese are looking to progress to the next round and hopefully past the semi-final stage this time round.



Featured photo: Getty Images

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