In the first game of World Cup action on Thursday, the Ivory Coast took on Colombia in a Group C match in Estadio Nacional in Brasilia. Both teams won their first World Cup matches as the Ivory Coast defeated Japan and Colombia defeated Greece.
Coming into the game, both teams knew that the winner of this match would be in first place in Group C. Ultimately, the huge consequences of the game helped to create an enthralling match from the start.
Although neither team scored in the first half, much of that can be attested to solid defensive efforts from both sides. In the second half, the game blew wide open during a nine minute scoring frenzy that saw all three of the games goals being scored.
In the 64th minute of the game, the Ivory Coast conceded a corner kick to Colombia. Juan Guillermo Cuadrado took the corner kick and vollied a perfect cross into the box where James Rodriguez lept up and nailed a header into the top left corner of the goal.
Just six minutes later in the 70th minute, the Colombians took a commanding 2-0 lead with only twenty minutes left in the match. Coming off of a fast break and a beautiful through ball from Teofilo Gutierrez, Juan Quintero of Colombia sunk a shot from his left foot into the bottom left corner of the net.
More coverage: World Cup News | World Cup table, standings and schedule | World Cup GIFs
Ivory Coast would not wilt, however, as just three minutes later Gervinho used his sensational footwork to nail a right footed shot into the top left corner of the net just out of the goalie’s reach.
The Ivory Coast then had two chances to score in the waning moments of the game on the foot of Didier Drogba, but it was not meant to be. In the end, Colombia took home the 2-1 victory and first place in Group C.
Colombia won their second World Cup game for the first time in history, and needs a Japan loss or draw tonight against Greece in order to move on to the knockout stage of the tournament.