A roundup of all of Saturday’s action at the U-20 World Cup in Poland…
[ TRANSFER RUMORS: Man United after Portuguese duo; Spurs want Lo Celso ]
France 2-0 Saudi Arabia
While France enjoyed nearly 70 percent of possession, thanks to playing 78 minutes with a man advantage, they were anything but dominant and overwhelming in their 2-0 victory over Saudi Arabia.
Les Bleus‘ opener came just before halftime, when Youssouf Fofana (Strasbourg) volleyed home from the edge of the penalty area. Saudi Arabia went dangerously close to equalizing just seconds later, but Illan Meslier (Lorient) made a stellar save to his left to deny Turki Al-Ammar.
The 1-0 scoreline remained all the way until the 75th minute, when finally Amine Gouiri (Lyon) hit a shot off the hands of the goalkeeper and watched as it bounced over the goal line for a 2-0 lead and to complete the scoring.
France will take on Panama in their next Group E game on Tuesday.
Argentina 5-2 South Africa
Ezequiel Barco might have made himself — and Atlanta United — a few million dollars on Saturday, thanks to an otherworldly golazo in Argentina’s 5-2 victory over South Africa.
The 20-year-old hit the following volley from just inside the penalty area to make it 3-1. All you can do is sit back, watch in awe and count up all the extra dollars Atlanta United are now set to make when Barco inevitably moves to Europe, following in the footsteps of Miguel Almiron and his $30-million move to Newcastle United in January.
Fausto Vera (Argentinos Juniors) opened the in just the 4th minute, followed by Barco’s first of the game — from the penalty spot — in the 63rd. The golazo came eight minutes later, followed by late tallies from Julian Alvarez (River Plate) and Adolfo Gaich (San Lorenzo) in the 78th and 90th minutes, respectively.
Next up, Argentina will face Portugal in a battle for Group F supremacy on Tuesday.
Portugal 1-0 South Korea
Much like France, Portugal were made to work mightily hard for their tournament-opening victory over South Korea.
Trincao (Braga) scored the game’s only goal in the 7th minute, when he timed his run perfectly to get on the end of Jota’s (Benfica) through ball. The counter-attack was lightning quick, and Trincao’s finish cool and precise. Portugal had the ball in the back of the net again in the 19th minute, but a look at video review revealed that Rafael Leao (Lille) was offside during the build-up before he picked out Trincao with his cross.
Elsewhere in the U-20 World Cup
Panama 1-1 Mali 0 [ HIGHLIGHTS ]
Sunday’s U-20 World Cup schedule
Mexico v. Japan — 9:30 a.m. ET
Ecuador v. Italy — 12 p.m. ET
Senegal v. Colombia — 12 p.m. ET
Poland v. Tahiti — 2:30 p.m. ET