The World Cup knockout rounds have started this Saturday and so far, there has been plenty of good news for Manchester United players. First four of the eight matches are gone and in all four matches, the teams with Man United players in their squads managed to reach the quarterfinals. Here is everything you need to know about the past two days’ action in Qatar, as the Netherlands, Argentina, France and England qualified for the next round.
Malacia Still Waiting, But Netherlands Keep Marching
In the first match of the World Cup round of 16, the Netherlands got past the United States with a comfortable 3-1 victory. This was yet another match, fourth in total, in which Man United’s Tyrell Malacia did not get a chance to make his World Cup debut. Once again, it was Daley Blind who started in the left wingback role and this time, Louis van Gaal’s decision was truly vindicated, as the former Man United defender scored the second goal of the night. Denzel Dumfries made the assist for him and another former United player, Memphis Depay. Afterwards, he also scored, sealing the win after Haji Wright managed to briefly pull one back. It seems unlikely we’ll be seeing any of Malacia in this tournament, unless something unpredictable happens.
Argentina Get Past Australia And Into The Quarters
The Netherlands will be facing off against Argentina, in the rematch of the iconic 1998 World cup quarterfinal. This time, Lisandro Martinez played his role in Argentina’s 2-1 win over Australia, after he replaced forward Alejandro Papu Gomez after 50 minutes. Once again, Martinez did not start as part of the back four, but was brought on later on to close of the match following a 2-0 lead. Argentina’s goals came through Lionel Messi and Julian Alvarez, while Enzo Fernandez scored the own goal just to give hope to Socceroos. Now we got an interesting matchup in the quarters coming up…
Varane’s France Defeat Poland
On Sunday, more good news for Man United players. Raphael Varane played full 90 minutes for France, as they defeated Poland 3-1 in a really interesting match. While everyone will rightfully talk about Kylian Mbappe and his new brace in Qatar, Varane was part of a defence that did a good job, with Robert Lewandowski managing to score from the spot only in the stoppage, when everything was resolved already.
England Dispatch Senegal
The French will have an interesting match in the quarters as well, as they will have to play England. Last World Cup, only Croatia managed to stop this matchup from being the big final, but now Gareth Southgate’s side will have their chance to stop the world champions. They defeated Senegal 3-0, quite comfortably. With Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw playing full 90 minutes, England earned another clean-sheet, while Marcus Rashford came on for Bukayo Saka, playing for the final 25 minutes of the match. The goals were courtesy of Jordan Henderson, Harry Kane and Saka himself.