Uruguay beat Ghana 2-0 in a Group H game but that wasn’t enough for the two-time winners to reach the knockout stage of the FIFA World Cup in Al Wakra on Friday.
Instead of the team that was expected to finish second in the group, it was South Korea which made it to the next stage after a 2-1 shock win over Portugal before finishing runners-up in the group.
The South Americans, who had won the inaugural edition of the tournament in 1930 and again twenty years later, scored both goals through Giorgiande Arrascaeta.
Arrascaeta scored both goals in a span of six minutes to put his side in the lead. The first was a close-range header, while the second came via a volley.
Arrascaeta fired a brace (26’ & 32’) to guide Uruguay to victory that eventually didn’t seem to hold any purpose.
Ghana, meanwhile, missed an opportunity to make World Cup history as the third African team after Morocco and Senegal to reach the Round of 16.
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Ghana missed a penalty in the 21st minute of the first half kept Uruguay in the game. André Ayew, missed a penalty after Uruguay goalkeeper Sergio Rochet fouled Mohammed Kudus. Ayew looked unsettled following a lengthy delay before the penalty as Rochet dived quickly to make a save.
Uruguay put up their best show of the tournament after their matches against against South Korea (0-0) and Portugal (0-2).
South Korea registered a second shock in two days by Asian teams after Japan defeated Spain to make it to the next round as group leaders.
The Koreans finished second, making it only the third time they have reached the Round of 16 in eleven World Cup appearances.
Portugal lead Group H and are through to the last 16 and will meet Serbia, Switzerland, or Cameroon. South Korea will face Brazil.
The 15 teams that have already qualified for the knockout stage are South Korea, Japan, Spain, Morocco, Croatia, Argentina, Poland, Australia, Portugal, Brazil, England, France, the Netherlands, Senegal and USA.
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The final 16th team will be decided as Serbia, Switzerland and Cameroon fight for the one spot from Group G.