Poland confident ahead of crunch Colombia World Cup match

Eloise Marshall
June 25, 2018

The match started to a barrage of noise from the yellow-shirted Colombian fans and the early exchanges were frenetic with Poland putting in some physical challenges and Robert Lewandowski getting close attention from the Colombian defence.

- Despite failing to score against Senegal in Poland's opening match, Lewandowski has netted 21 goals in his last 16 appearances for his national team.

Poland were battling to keep possession of the ball, allowing the South Americans to run at them, perhaps hoping to pounce with a swift counter.

The Juventus winger's trickery would eventually pay dividends, but it was Falcao - who has dreamed all his life of scoring a World Cup goal - who turned on the style, dancing through the Polish defence to win the corner that led to Colombia's opener. Falcao missed the tournament in Brazil with a knee injury and had to wait until arriving in Russian Federation to score his first World Cup goal.

With the second round of Group H games in the books, the Kwese Sports panel examine the three-horse race between Colombia, Senegal and Japan. "We wanted to share this victory with him".

Asked why he was so sure, Nawalka said Poland had carried out detailed analysis of their opponents, but what was more important was what his own team would do on the pitch.

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Now Gareth Southgate and Roberto Martinez's squads will meet on Thursday to determine who wins the group. Colombia's highest goalscorer said after the game against Japan that "I$3 t's them or us".

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The Leicester City striker struck twice in the second half to keep the Super Eagles in with a chance of reaching the last-16. The penalty was awarded after a video review showed that Alfred Finnbogason had been brought down by Tyronne Ebuehi.

Given his first start after fully recovering from a calf injury, Rodriguez lived up to expectations.

Poland have never qualified for the second phase after losing their opening game, and they could face an even bigger challenge should Rodriguez return to Colombia's starting XI. He pressed relentlessly, tracked back and delivered an assist for Mina.

Their offensive play on Sunday appeared limited to launching long balls towards Lewandowski, who often had to fall back in the hope of receiving more service.

Colombia's Yerry Mina scored the goal for Colombia in the do-or-die match against Poland. The team was overwhelmed in midfield and looked clueless in attack in another error-ridden display that resulted in an early exit.

Robert Lewandowski, making his World Cup debut in Russian Federation, struggled with a lack of service throughout, the Bayern Munich striker going closest in the final few minutes when a long-range effort was tipped over by David Ospina. "The Colombian team was a much better team", Poland coach Adam Nawalka said.

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