Tuesday 17th August
France 2 - 0 Greece
Half time: 0 - 0
The opening game of the day saw the battle between French flair and Greek grit, a battle that was eventually won by the flair of the French. The Greek’s, who lost their first game 3-0 to Argentina, knew they were always going to be up against it and they battled well to go into half time level at 0-0.
France’s star performer and Captain, Frederic Villeroux, was again at the heart of everything and for the whole of the first half was unlucky to not to find the net on five or six occasions.
The French set up with an attacking formation, constantly playing with three men pushed into the Greek half and if wasn’t for the agility of Ampatzis, in goal, France could’ve been out of sight. Villeroux combined well with Baron and created chance after chance, all of which the Greek’s defended stoutly and it looked promising going into the second half.
Five minutes into the second half Greece created their first chance of the game with Dimos Zacharos bursting through before having his shot blocked by the legs of a French defender.
From then on the French seemed to step up a gear and Greece found them difficult to cope with as both Charalampos Tokatlidis and Stefanos Efremidis going into the referee’s book.
The first goal of the game came when Abderahim Maya played a beautiful back heeled pass in to the path of Baron who lashed the ball into the top corner of the net.
The Greek’s were able to hold on until three minutes from time when Villeroux again burst through the backline and, despite having his initial back heeled attempt saved, he bundled the ball into the net. Villeroux had a couple of chances to increase the lead after this but he was unable to score and the whistle went with the final score 2-0 to France.
Jonathan Grangier (GK), Yvan Kepmengi, Martin Baron, Abderahim Maya, David Labarre, Arnaud Ayax, Frederic Villeroux, Charaf Ait Taleb, Frederic Jannas (GK)
Martin Baron, Frederic Villeroux
Georgios Ampatzis (GK), Stefanos Efremidis, Charalampos Tokaltidis, Georgios Tokaltidis, Theodoros Siotas, Dimos Zacharos, Dimitrios Feimoglou, Efstratios Chatziapostolidis, Panagiotis Stefanidis (GK)
Stefanos Efremidis, Charalampos Tokatlidis
Match Officials: Germinal Lubrano, Paul Leversuch, Mariano Travaglino, Iguchi Kenji
Spain 1 - 0 South Korea
Half time: 0 - 0
Spain were looking to continue their 100% winning start to the competition against a South Korean side who were out to avenge their defeat to hosts England. In a first half display which saw both teams cancelling each other out it was Spain who enjoyed a majority of the possession.
The ever lively Antonio Martin was impressive again with his quality ball control and running with team mate Vicente Aguilar finding these runs time and time again, with his brilliant through balls.
Marcelo Rosado was let off his defensive duty for this game, and looked effective in the Spanish attack but was kept quiet by a well marshalled Korean back line. With just a minute to go until half time Korea gave away their fourth foul of the half and Martin stepped up to take the resulting long penalty. However, he drove the ball straight at Kim and the teams went in at half time with score 0-0.
The second half began like the first and time after time Spain’s attacks were stopped short and as a result the game turned into a scrappy affair and both teams reached their foul limit half way into the half, including a booking for Kyung Ho Kim.
Despite both teams being on the foul limit neither side gave away a further foul in the half and it was hard to see where a goal was going to come from. With just over a minute to go the game sparked into life as Antonio Martin picked the ball up from the keeper and dribbled his away through a tiring defence before firing a shot that hit both posts before going in off Kim in the goal.
The Koreans may have felt it was a lucky goal but it was no more than Spain deserved as they ran out winners 1-0, effectively ensuring their place in the semi-finals.
Alvaro Gonzalez (GK), Jose Luis Giera, Carmelo Garrido, Adolfo Acosta, Antonio Martin, Alfredo Cuadrado, Pedro Villa, Vicente Aguilar, Marcleo Rosado, Raul Diaz (GK)
Sang Won Kim (GK), Yeong Jun Jang, Yun Cheol Shin, Seung Woo Park, Meong Su Park, Yong Kyun Oh, Ji Young Ha, Chang Hyun Kwak, Kyung Ho Kim, Hyun Chul Shin (GK)
Kyung Ho Kim
Match Officials: Wellington Souza, Mariano Travaglino, Iguchi Kenji, Niels Haupt
Argentina 0 - 1 China
Half time: 0 - 1
In an entertaining battle between skill and physicality Argentina were made to rue five missed penalty chances as they lost to a skilful Chinese side 1-0. The game began at a fast pace as both sides looked to make the early break through in a game that would put the victor in a strong position to qualify for the semi-finals.
Ten minutes in Argentina had a decent penalty shout turned down by the referee, much to the disgust of the Argentina bench. The first guilt edge chance of the game came when Ya Feng Wang dribbled his way past the defence before firing straight at the keeper.
In a team full of stars Wen Fa Zheng looked the most likely to give that little bit extra and produce a goal for his team, however, Lencina in the Argentine goal was a man inspired keeping out everything they could throw at him.
With a couple of minutes of the half remaining China were given a penalty but Zhou Bin Wang fired wide. Despite this penalty miss the Chinese team rallied and managed to grab a goal before half time when Zhou Bin Wang ran throw a couple of robust challenges before firing under the keeper.
The second half brought a decline in the standard of play and both teams reached their three foul limit within ten minutes. China gave away five extra fouls but each time Hua Chu Xu excelled and managed to save every penalty to the plaudits of his management staff.
His excellent performance continued and stopped two last ditch attempts from Argentina to level the score before full time and as the whistle went it the game ended 1-0 China.
Dario Lencina (GK), Angel Deldo, Eduardo Diaz, Silvio Velo, Diego Cerega, Ivan Figueroa, Lucas Rodriguez, Oscar Asiar, Gustavo Maidana, Ernesto Juani (GK)
Hua Chu Xu (GK), Shan Yong Chen, Li Jing Zhang, Tang Bao Gao, Tian Qi Gao, Zhou Bin Wang, Wen Fa Zheng, Ya Feng Wang, Lei Niu (GK)
Zhou Bin Wang
Wen Fa Zheng
Match Officials: Francois Carcouet, Craig Crundy, Niels Haupt, Germinal Lubrano
England 2 - 0 Japan
Half time: 1 - 0
An efficient England performance saw them ease past a dogged Japanese side, to win two out of their three games and put themselves in the driving seat to qualify for Saturdays semi-finals.
The first half began with both sides looking dangerous and there were worrying signs early on for England with Tomonari Kuroda looking particularly threatening in attack. With the game ebbing and flowing nicely both sides looked to the counter attack to break the deadlock. It finally came when Jonathan Gribbin took a quick corner and ran through the defence before lashing the ball home.
After the goal England were in control and keeper Lewis Skyres only had one simple save to make before the whistle was blown before half time. The second half a more closely fought affair and both teams soon racked up the limit of three fouls. Both Keryn Seal and Jonathan Gribbin were booked but their determination typified the effort in the English defence.
The second England goal came via a penalty from skipper David Clarke, who stepped up, after missing three previous penalties, to hammer the ball home into the top left hand corner. From then on it was all Japan and it took every inch of Skyres talent to keep the ball out the back of his net, making three world class saves.
Japan did have a couple of penalties themselves in attempt to pull a goal back but again Skyres rose to the challenge, saving two and seeing the third wide. With just seconds to go Japan pushed forward one last time to at least get a consolation goal but Skyres and his defence kept them at bay and the referee blew the final whistle with the score finishing 2-0.
Lewis Skyres (GK), Simon Hill, Will Norman, Keryn Seal, Robin Williams, Dan English, David Clarke, Jonathan Heenan, Jonathan Gribbin, Dan James (GK)
Jonathan Gribbin, David Clarke
Jonathan Gribbin, Keryn Seal
Daisuke Sato (GK), Akihito Tanaka, Tomonari Kuroda, Hiroshi Ochiai, Yashuhiro Sasaki, Kento Kato, Kenro Mihara, Shuichi Yamaguchi, Hajime Teranishi, Naoya Abe (GK)
Match Officials: Wellington Souza, Alexandros Karaiosif, David Bryant, Paul Leversuch