Belgium served up one of the most impressive performances of the 2018 FIFA World Cup to date on Saturday, smashing Tunisia 5-2 in Group G. The result, coupled with the team's excellent goal difference, means the Red Devils have all but qualified for the knockout stages.
In the second match of the day, Mexico hung on to beat South Korea. Finally, Germany narrowly beat Sweden to keep their World Cup hopes alive.
Saturday Results, Schedule
Belgium 5-2 Tunisia
South Korea 1-2 Mexico
Germany 2-1 Sweden
3 p.m. local time/1 p.m. BST/8 a.m. ET: England vs. Panama (Group G)
8 p.m. local time/4 p.m. BST/11 a.m. ET: Japan vs. Senegal (Group H)
9 p.m. local time/7 p.m. BST/2 p.m. ET: Poland vs. Colombia (Group H)
For the second match in a row, Belgium easily dispatched of an overwhelmed opponent in Group G. After their 3-0 win over Panama in the opener, the Red Devils put five goals past Tunisia, who could have conceded a lot more with their wide-open style of play.
The Carthage Eagles were not afraid to attack Belgium, and it made for a fantastic outing filled with chances. Unsurprisingly, the Red Devils who came out on top, given their sublime form:
ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo
Belgium beats Tunisia, 5-2, to extend its unbeaten streak to 21 matches, the second-longest active streak. It's the first time in #WorldCup history Belgium scored 5 goals in a match. #BEL advances with an England win or draw against Panama on Sunday. https://t.co/KdwYy1ke1l
Group G wasn't expected to be a close one, with most assuming Belgium and England would roll past the competition to set up a showdown on the final matchday. That's what has happened so far:
Belgium put down a major marker with their win, but England could just as easily have scored five goals in their encounter with Tunisia. The Three Lions had all kinds of chances in the first half of that match, with some poor finishing and bad luck leading to the tense second half.
A late goal from Son Heung-min resulted in a nervy end to the game for El Tri, but they grabbed their second win of the tournament relatively comfortably.
Carlos Vela opened the scoring from the penalty spot, and Javier Hernandez doubled the lead after the break. Korea barely threatened, and Son's strike was little consolation.
Bleacher Report's Sam Tighe was impressed with Mexico:
Sam Tighe @stighefootball
FT: #KOR 1-2 #MEX. Mexico obviously at their attacking peak when countering, but good to see the other side of them: passing through a more reserved opponent. Lozano eye-catching but Vela the best for me. Roaming, creating. Gallardo good, Salcedo mopped up pretty well. #WorldCup
The final outing of the day was another tense affair, in which Toni Kroos scored a late free-kick to hand the defending champions the win.
Ola Toivonen opened the scoring for the Swedes, who more than held their own in the first half and could have led by more, if VAR had done its job and handed the side a penalty for a foul on Marcus Berg.
Instead, Marco Reus was able to tie things up early in the second half. Die Mannschaft were unable to push for a winner throughout the half and even lose Jerome Boateng to a red card but deep in injury time, Sweden's resistance finally cracked.
With the win. Germany moved into second place in their group, behind Mexico. They'll face South Korea in their final match, knowing a win will almost surely put them in the next round. If the Swedes beat Mexico, goal difference comes into play.