This World Cup has had its fair share of upsets, way more than most people expected. Saudi Arabia pulled off one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history with their win over Argentina. This win was so important to the Saudis that the day after the game was declared a public holiday. While Argentina bounced back from the loss and is now in the Semi-Finals, and Saudi Arabia didn’t win any more games, this was still something major.
If we head over to Group D we saw so many surprises. To start, Denmark (who many thought were a dark horse in the tournament) finished bottom of the group. Australia of all teams advanced to the Round of 16, something no one expected, defeating Tunisia and Denmark. Tunisia pulled off an upset against France in their final game. Though they went out, they went out with grace.
Japan! This was the story of Group E. Japan topped the group with 6 points, their two wins coming over European powerhouses Spain and Germany (yet somehow they lost to Costa Rica). Spain was the one who came second in the group, advancing over Germany by a goal difference. This is the second World Cup in a row that Germany has been knocked out in the group stage. After their World Cup win in 2014, it really has been disastrous for Deutschland.
What a tournament it has been for Morocco. They began it with a 0-0 draw with Croatia. They then proceeded to defeat Belgium 2-0! They got a win over Canada, topping the group! They were then matched up with Spain in the Round of 16, and both teams were held scoreless through 120 mins. Morocco then proceeded to send Spain home on penalties with Hakimi (who was born in Madrid to Moroccan parents) sending the country of his birth home with a cheeky Panenka! The journey for Morocco didn’t stop there. They faced close neighbors Portugal who were coming off a 6-1 thrashing of Switzerland. Morocco squeaked out a 1-0 win, sending Cristiano Ronaldo, leaving his illustrious career World Cup-less. Morocco is now the first African country to ever reach the Semi-finals of the World Cup, now they face France, they’ve already sent tournament favorites like Belgium, Spain, and Portugal home, why couldn’t they just win it all?