Madrid 2018: Argentina through to last eightMali also make history with first World Championship win 12 Jun 2018
Two-time world champions Argentina defeated France 3-0 on day five (11 June) to secure a spot in the quarter finals of the 2018 International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) Blind Football World Championships in Madrid, Spain.
Nicolas Veliz twice and Lucas Rodriguez scored the goals for the Rio 2016 bronze medallists, who lead group B with seven points and a goal difference of four. Colombia (4 points) and Paralympic silver medallists Iran (3) will fight it out on 12 June to take the group’s other slot.
France were eliminated without earning points.
Defending champions Brazil (9) continued their winning ways, beating England (3) 3-0 to finish first in group D with maximum points. Gledson, Ricardinho and Jefinho scored the goals. Brazil have so far netted a staggering 23 goals and conceded just two.
In the same group, Mali (3) made history be securing their first victory at a World Championships after beating Costa Rica (0) 1-0. Mamadou Thiam scored the sole goal.
England will play Costa Rica on 12 June in the group’s last game. Both teams and Mali can still mathematically qualify for the quarter finals, but England are currently the most likely to reach the knockout stages due to their superior goal difference.
In group D, Spain (6) surprisingly lost to Turkey (3) 1-0 with a goal by Hasan Satay. The hosts have already qualified for the next round, but may yet have to settle for second place in the group. Thailand (3) and African champions Morocco (3) will face-off to decide the other team advancing into the next round.
Russia* (4) defeated South Korea (0) 3-0 in group C with goals from Andrey Tikhonov, Sergey Igorov and Evgenii Ivanov. The European champions only need to draw against China (6) to secure a place in the next round. Mexico (1) must beat South Korea to have any chance of qualifying.
The 2018 IBSA Blind Football World Championships features 16 of the world’s best teams. As well as the title on offer the competition is also an important step on the road to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics.
The group stages run until 12 June. The quarter finals and play-offs begin on 13 June with the final taking place on 17 June.
*Editor's note: The International Paralympic Committee suspended the Russian Paralympic Committee on 7 August 2016 for its inability to fulfil its IPC membership responsibilities and obligations, in particular its obligation to comply with the IPC Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Code (to which it is also a signatory). As a result of the suspension, Russian athletes cannot enter IPC sanctioned events or competitions, including the Paralympic Games.
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