World Cup Brazil: Greece miraculously through to second round; Côte d'Ivoire out
By Frans van Hees | www.AboutBrasil.com | Week 26, June 2014
Rio de Janeiro — In Fortaleza, at the northeastern coast of Brazil,
Greeceperformed a Houdini escape act against the flabbergasted soccer players of
Côte d'Ivoire. In injury time, Celtic forward Samaras shot all hopes of The Elephants to pieces from the penalty spot: 2-1.
Despite two early substitutes, in the first half the
soccer team of Greecedid what they should have done: scoring against Côte d'Ivoire.
Before the goal, due to a leg injury Gkergki Kone had been replaced by Andreas Samaris.
Furthermore, the Greek goalie could not play on, due to a sore back. Orestis Karnezis was replaced by Panagiotis Glykos.
On the way to half-time, the Greek José Holebas shot at the crossbar. Shortly afterwards the Greek scored anyway, thanks to appallingly clumsy defending by Côte d'Ivoire. Substitute Samaris scored: 1-0.
With that score, the Africans would be eliminated. It seemed it would not come this far. In the
Castelão stadiumWilfried Bony, also a substitute, scored in the 74th minute the equalizer.
Already in injury time however, an alleged foul against Georgios Samaras in the penalty area was punished with a penalty for Greece. Samaras himself converted the opportunity into a goal and thus the Greeks are surprisingly through to the last sixteen teams at World Cup 2014.
For the first time in history Greece, the European champion in 2004, makes it to the second round of a World Cup tournament. In the second round, Greece will play against the soccer team of Costa Rica, also a surprise entry.
World Cup 2014 Group Cwinner Colombia will challenge its fellow South Americans from Uruguay.
Matches & Standings Group C - World Cup 2014