The road to the knockout rounds became much clearer on Sunday for Groups A and B at the FIFA Under-20 World Cup Poland 2019. With two of three group stage matches played for eight teams, two sides can already count themselves among the final 16.
Italy clinched a place in the Round of 16 at Poland 2019, having recorded back-to-back wins over Mexico and Ecuador. Their latest conquest in Bydgoszcz was workmanlike, with captain Andrea Pinamonti putting Gli Azzurrini ahead early and their heady defence doing the rest.
Senegal made it two victories in two games by converting a pair of penalties against Colombia, also solidifying a spot in the last 16. The Lions of Teranga boast a three-point cushion on top of Group A with Poland as their final group stage opponent.
Earlier in the day, Japan put together perhaps an even more impressive performance, shutting out the touted Mexico attack to the tune of 3-0 in Gdynia for their first win of the competition.
Which brings us to the hosts, who, after experiencing dismay in their debut, rapidly course-corrected by jumping all over Tahiti. It was a jubilant night for the home crowd, and Bialo-czerwoni will have everything on the line when first-place Senegal come to Lodz on Wednesday.