Controversial tiebreaker rule eliminated Senegal from the World Cup

Federation Internationale de Football Association introduced this method of separating teams for the 2018 tournament, with the drawing of lots the next step if Japan had picked up another two yellow cards in Thursday's match. It's the first time in World Cup history that a team has been eliminated on the basis of fair play points.

Senegal's forward Keita Balde (left) speaks with Serbian referee Milorad Mazic during their Russian Federation 2018 World Cup Group H match against Colombia at the Samara Arena in Samara on June 28, 2018. But after Japan also lost to Poland, 1-0, Japan and Senegal remained deadlocked in second place in the group at four points each, meaning that advancing would come down to tiebreakers.

Each team controlled its destiny and would advance with a win.

There were few early chances to speak of, though Senegal were by some distance the better of the two sides.

Colombia lost talisman James Rodriguez in the 30th minute to injury with Sevilla's Luis Muriel entering proceedings with openings continuing to be hard to come by against a disciplined Senegalese side.

Intervention from VAR saw referee Milorad Mazic overturn his original decision, with replays having shown that Sanchez had expertly taken the ball off the toe of Sadio Mane as the Liverpool winger ran through on goal.

It initially started as a quiet murmur, before word gradually spread among the several thousand Colombian fans.

GOOOOOOOOOAL! Another #WorldCup goal for Yerry Mina!

The victory pushed the Colombians through to the round of 16 for the second straight World Cup.

Things were about to get even better for the wall of yellow shirts - they would soon have a goal of their own to cheer.

Colombia did however go close in the 12th minute when a Juan Fernando Quintero free-kick was saved by Senegal goalkeeper Khadim N'Diaye after Radamel Falcao had been brought down.

Usually blessed with rhythm and impeccable footwork, Colombia have treated the watching crowds to some memorable celebrations over the years.

The teams could hardly be separated, scores deadlocked at the half with neither looking likely to take the lead in a tightly contested midfield battle. They went on to lose 2-1 against Japan.

As it stands, Japan and Senegal have the advantage, with four points after two games.

Senegal knew they were heading out and responded well to Mina's goal, Ismaila Sarr missing a fine chance after being picked out by Mane.

And it would appear this became clear to the Samurai Blue and Poland after Colombia took the lead, with the two teams happily passing the ball around easily for the final few minutes - much to the annoyance of the attending fans.

  • Stacy Allen