- Sweden win 3-0, finish top of Group F
- Mexico make last 16 despite heavy defeat
- Sweden will play runners up of Group E in last 16
- Mexico will play winners of Group E in last 16
Sweden battered Mexico 3-0 in their final Group F game on Wednesday, with both teams advancing and reigning World Cup champions Germany crashing out.
The Swedish side were worthy of their win and took the lead at the start of the second half via Ludwig Augustinsson’s volley, then Andreas Granqvist added a second via the penalty spot and Enrique Alvarez scored an own goal.
Both Sweden and Mexico qualified for the last 16 with Germany crashing out in stunning fashion after losing to South Korea.
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Within the first 15 seconds Mexico had Jesus Gallardo booked for an aerial challenge (the fastest yellow card in history) and from that set piece Marcus Berg won the header but Granqvist couldn’t quite connect inside the six yard box.
Soon after Gulliermo Ochoa pushed away Emil Forsberg’s free kick after he had been penalized for handling the ball outside the box.
Berg then sent an acrobatic effort just wide as Sweden continued to be dangerous from set piece situations. At the other end Mexico pressed high and won the ball back with Carlos Vela curling inches wide of the far post.
Moments later Sweden had yet another chance in a breathless first half with Forsberg firing over from a great position in the box as another high cross into the box caused havoc.
The drama kept on coming as Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez looked to have handled the ball in the box and referee Nestor Pitana used VAR to check the incident but stuck with his initial decision of no penalty. From the resulting corner after that Berg prodded towards goal from close range but Ochoa tipped over.
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Sweden got their goal early in the first half as Augustinsson finished volleyed home at the back post after an air shot from Claesson saw the chance fall to him.
What a moment.
Sweden then went 2-0 up and their goal came from the penalty spot as Hector Moreno’s clumsy challenge on Berg was penalized.
Granqvist stepped up to slam home the penalty kick and put Sweden on the brink of reaching the lat 16.
Fabian went close with a shot from distance which deflected just over, but then Mexico imploded as Alvarez bundled the ball into his own net to make it 3-0 to Sweden.
Vela somehow missed a header from two yards out in the closing stages as Mexico finished strongly.
El Tri were celebrating Germany’s shocking defeat as they’d made it to the last 16 for a seventh-straight World Cup.