Search

World Cup: Tragedy for Ivory Coast as Greece progress after last minute drama

08:21 25 June 2014

Georgios Samaras, Greece. Picture: Press Association

Georgios Samaras, Greece. Picture: Press Association

EMPICS Sport

It was winner takes all between Ivory Coast and Greece last night in the final Group C game inside Fortaleza’s Estádio Castelão.

Ivory Coast's Didier Drogba will be heading home with his team mates. Picture: Press AssociationIvory Coast's Didier Drogba will be heading home with his team mates. Picture: Press Association

Colombia, playing Japan in the other game, were already through, but second place was up for grabs, with the Ivorians on three points and Japan and Greece both on one.

A cagey opening half hour wasn’t helped by injuries to two Greek players. Kone was substituted with what looked like a hamstring injury after just eight minutes, while keeper Karnezis didn’t last much longer, and was replaced by Glykos after 24.

But the drama began just before half time, when, on 42 minutes, Samaris, on for Kone, capitalised on a Tiote mistake, confidently finishing past goalkeeper Barry to give Greece the advantage.

As it stood at half time, they were heading through, as Japan were drawing 1-1 with the impressive Colombia.

The second half saw an energised Ivory Coast, desperate for an equaliser that would see them through to the last 16.

They brought on Swansea City’s Wilfried Bony on the hour mark and the stocky striker took just 14 minutes to score the goal that he hoped would be enough to see his country progress.

With Colombia now 2-1 up, Ivory Coast looked set to meet Costa Rica in the last 16, though they would live to regret their complacency in the last third that saw chances squandered in the last 20 minutes.

After a long-range Karagounis strike dipped and swerved onto the crossbar, and Colombia compounded their victory with a further two goals, tragedy struck for Ivory Coast in the 90th minute when Sio, perhaps accidently, brought down Samaras in the book as he looked to get a first time shot off.

As unfortunate as it may have been, it was a clear penalty, which the referee had no hesitation in giving.

Step up Samaras, the forward known to most as being relaxed, or probably too relaxed.

His demeanour would assist him in what was the most high-pressure penalty he will ever take though, as he confidently dispatched the spot kick to send his team-mates, bench, fans and country into raptures.

The Ivory Coast players were visibly distraught, and with no time to recover, the final whistle was blown to confirm a last-16 tie that no-one would have predicted.

The Greeks will meet Costa Rica at 9pm on Sunday in Arena Pernambuco.

Latest Ilford Sports News

60 minutes ago
Lloyd James celebrates after scoring at York City with then Leyton Orient player-manager Kevin Nolan (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Ex-Wales under-21 international discusses impact the former West Ham United captain had at Brisbane Road

A Ford bowler in action against Newham seconds at the start of the Essex County League season (pic: Tim Edwards)

Ali Raja looks ahead to a double-header against a strong team in two different competitions

15:39
TopGolf are offering free lessons for over-55s, including at their Chigwell venue (pic: Sam Docker Photography)

Sports venue hope offer leads to more choosing a healthier life

Anwar Uddin has left Sporting Bengal United after spending the 2015/16 season with the Mile End Stadium club (pic: Tim Edwards).

Old Daggers captain will be alongside the likes of Craig Mackail-Smith, Paul Benson and more this weekend

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

Win a BMW 1 series

There are fewer cars currently on the market more stylish and exciting than the BMW. Known all over the world as one of the best car manufacturers, the BMW is renowned for sleek designs and fantastic high quality workmanship.

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Ilford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe