Well, just like that the curtain has closed on Group C.

What Happened

France and Denmark played out a 0-0 result that ensured both would progress to the knockout stages of this World Cup.

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Australia entered the match with Peru knowing they needed all three points and for the sixth World Cup match in a row, they would concede first. Peru would eventually prevail 2-0 despite Australia’s efforts with the goals scored by Andre Carrillo and Paolo Guerrero.

Stand Out Performers

  1. Peru. They deserved a win off the back of their performances in Russia and they can now head home with their heads held high.
  2. Denmark’s defence is rock-solid. In every group match the Danish defensive line has been thoroughly tested and so far they have shown that scoring against them will take real effort. I would not count out Denmark grinding out a Round of 16 win against Croatia.
  3. Craig Foster’s post-match analysis really went in on Australia’s performance in Russia. It was harsh, honest and very much needed. Watch it if you haven’t already.

Talking Points

From an Australian perspective, there are so many talking points that could be discussed. Quite simply the Socceroos weren’t good enough in Russia. It’s very hard to reach the knockout stages when your only goals come from the penalty spot and this leads to my next point – Australia is toothless in the final third, they just straight up struggle to score. It’s been this way for a few years now and it’s not going to change overnight.

A goalscorer needs to emerge from somewhere. Jamie Maclaren, the floor is yours.

Hopefully the Socceroos regroup and can come out swinging in a few months time to successfully defend their Asian Cup title.

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What it Means

Sadly, Australia now joins Peru in bidding farewell to the 2018 World Cup. France now faces a daunting match up with Argentina who are yet to really hit their straps this tournament. Denmark will lock horns with Croatia in the other match containing Group C alumni. Both nations have a great chance of progressing from these matches to the Quarter-Final stage.

Needs Work

France is still yet to really arrive at this World Cup. Luckily for them winning Group C has earned them a heavyweight duel with Argentina. They’ll need to be at their best to knock off a determined Lionel Messi on Sunday morning.

What’s Next

France progress to the Round of 16 to play Argentina and Denmark face Croatia. For Australia and Peru? Holidays.

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Goal of the Day

Andre Carrillo buried a volley that sent Peruvian fans into hysteria. Guerrero picked out his winger following a long (albeit marginally offside) lead and what followed from Carrillo was a wonder strike to savour.

Miss of the Day

France absolutely dominated the first half against Denmark with opportunities galore going begging and Olivier Giroud was on the end of the best of the lot. After linking up with Antoine Griezmann Giroud was gifted a tantalising cutback that was just asking to be hit with some violence. Unfortunately, Giroud sprayed his shot well over the bar. You’ve got to start burying these Olivier!

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Josh is in the final stages of a journalism degree at The University of Queensland and is also firmly aboard the Arzani hype-train.