Watch: A closer look at sublime James Rodriguez assists in Colombia win over Poland

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Colombia kept their hopes of reaching the knockout stages at the World Cup alive and ended Poland’s when they beat them 3-0 on Sunday.

One man who stood out, perhaps predictably, was James Rodriguez.

The Real Madrid attacking midfielder on loan to Bayern Munich provided two excellent assists for the first and third goals.

Meanwhile, Juan Quintero was in top form as well and did well to play Radamel Falcao clean through for the second.

Here’s a look at those assists in detail with the help of some fine animation.


James takes short corner and eventually gets it played back to him in space down the right side. He curls in a delicious first-time cross with his left foot. The in-swinger is hung up beautifully for Yerry Mina to head home.


When James receives possession in his own half way out on the left flank, there appears to be no danger whatsoever but the fact that he sets Juan Cuadrado clean through on goal with one pass is testament to his vision and execution.

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England finishing top of Group G might help their World Cup title hopes

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England secured a place in the last 16 of the World Cup following an impressive 6-1 victory over Panama in Nizhny Novgorod on Sunday.

The Three Lions currently top Group G ahead of the showdown with rivals Belgium in Kaliningrad on Thursday night.

Since the World Cup switched to a last 16 knockout stage at the 1986 World Cup in Mexico, the eventual champions have always won their group.

Here, Press Association Sport takes a look at how the statistics stack up for England’s hopes of World Cup glory in Russia.

Mexico ’86

Argentina 1986

Winners: Argentina (1st, Group A)

Runners-up: West Germany (2nd, Group E)

Third: France (2nd, Group C)

Fourth: Belgium (3rd, Group B)

With an initial six-group stage, the best four third-placed teams also progressed. Argentina topped Group A ahead of Italy and Bulgaria. West Germany were runners-up in Group E behind Denmark.

Italia ’90

West Germany

Winners: West Germany (1st, Group D)

Runners-up: Argentina (3rd, Group B)

Third: Italy (1st, Group A)

Fourth: England (1st, Group F)

West Germany advanced undefeated from their group as winners, ahead of Yugoslavia and Colombia. Diego Maradona’s team had progressed as one of the best third-placed teams after recovering from the shock defeat by Cameroon at the San Siro in Group B.

USA ’94

Brazil 1994

Winners: Brazil (1st, Group B)

Runners-up: Italy (3rd, Group E)

Third: Sweden (2nd, Group B)

Fourth: Bulgaria (2nd, Group D)

Brazil won their fourth World Cup title having coasted through as Group B winners ahead of Sweden. Italy had to lift themselves following a 1-0 defeat against the Republic of Ireland in New Jersey, eventually edging into the last 16 as one of the best third-placed sides.

France ’98

france 1998

Winners: France (1st, Group C)

Runners-up: Brazil (1st, Group A)

Third: Croatia (2nd, Group H)

Fourth: Holland (1st, Group E)

In a first tournament to feature 32 teams across eight opening groups, hosts France topped Group C with three wins and went on to defeat Brazil in the final – the holders having come through top of Group A after opening with a 2-1 win over Scotland.

South Korea/Japan 2002

Brazil 2002

Winners: Brazil (1st, Group C)

Runners-up: Germany (1st, Group E)

Third: Turkey (2nd, Group C)

Fourth: South Korea (1st, Group D)

In the first co-hosted World Cup, Brazil went on to become champions again, lifting the trophy for a fifth time, after comfortably progressing as winners of Group C ahead of Turkey. Germany, meanwhile, had topped Group E, with the Republic of Ireland as runners-up.

Germany 2006

Italy 2006

Winners: Italy (1st, Group E)

Runners-up: France (2nd, Group G)

Third: Germany (1st, Group A)

Fourth: Portugal (1st, Group D)Italy delivered a fourth World Cup triumph, winning Group E ahead of Ghana. France progressed to the last 16 as runners-up in Group G, which had been won by Switzerland.

South Africa 2010

Spain 2010

Winners: Spain (1st, Group E)

Runners-up: Holland (1st, Group E)

Third: Germany (1st, Group D)

Fourth: Uruguay (1st, Group A)

Spain claimed a first World Cup crown after having lost their first match against Switzerland, but going on to win Group H ahead of Chile. Holland, meanwhile, won all three of their group matches to reach the last 16 with Japan in second place.

Brazil 2014

Germany 2014

Winners: Germany (1st, Group G)

Runners-up: Argentina (1st, Group F)

Third: Holland (1st, Group B)

Fourth: Brazil (1st, Group A)Germany were crowned world champions for the fourth time, reaching the last 16 as group winners ahead of the United States of America. Argentina had also topped their group, with three wins, to qualify with Nigeria in second place.

Provided by Press Association Sport

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A closer look at previous England-Belgium meetings as two sides set to face off for fourth time

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Harry Kane and Eden Hazard take centre stage for England and Belgium.

England take on Belgium in Kaliningrad on Thursday as the pair do battle at the World Cup to determine who will progress as winners of Group G.

This will be the fourth meeting of the two nations at a major tournament, with all previous games proving to be tight affairs.

Here, Press Association Sport looks at the previous three encounters ahead of the next meeting.

1954 World Cup – Group Stage – England 4 Belgium 4 (after extra-time)

Playing in just their second World Cup, Walter Winterbottom’s England enjoyed an enthralling start to the finals in Switzerland.

Groups had four teams of two seeds and two unseeded nations, with each side only playing twice.

Matches at the group stages also went to extra-time in the hopes of finding a winner but England and Belgium could still not be separated after two hours.

Newcastle’s Ivor Broadis and Nat Lofthouse of Bolton both scored a brace but the latter’s fourth goal in extra-time was cancelled out by a Jimmy Dickinson own goal to earn the Belgians a share of the spoils.

Euro 1980 – Group Stage – Belgium 1 England 1

Once again, England opened their campaign against Belgium – and once again the pair could not be separated.

Ray Wilkins gave the Three Lions the lead in Turin with another memorable solo strike only for Jan Ceulemans to level for Belgium just three minutes later.

Neither side could find a winner and Ron Greenwood’s England failed to get out of the group after losing to Italy in their next game.

Belgium went on to progress as winners of Group 2 and reached the final, only to lose 2-1 to West Germany in Rome.

1990 World Cup – last 16 – England 1 Belgium 0 (aet)

Undoubtedly one of England’s most famous World Cup results as David Platt came off the bench to score a superb winner in the last minute of extra-time as another draw between the pair loomed.

With penalties looking inevitable after Belgium had hit the post twice during the tie, Platt turned and volleyed home a terrific strike from Paul Gascoigne’s disguised free-kick.

England had narrowly beaten Egypt 1-0 to progress having drawn their opening two games in Group F to set up a tie with the Red Devils in Bologna.

Bobby Robson’s side would go on to beat Cameroon 3-2 in the quarter-finals before falling to eventual winners West Germany on penalties in the final four.

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