Colombia defeated Senegal 1-0 to advance to the World Cup round of 16 as Group H winners in a result that sent the African side out of the competition on the fair play ranking.
Yerry Mina’s 74th-minute header allowed Colombia to top the group on six points, while Senegal finished level on four points with Japan, who lost 1-0 to already-eliminated Poland in the other group game played simultaneously.
Both Japan and Senegal had even goal differences and had scored four goals each, but Japan advanced as runners-up because they only picked up four yellow cards in the group stage, while Senegal had six.
The fair play ranking is being used as a tiebreaker for the first time at a World Cup. Previously, a random drawing of lots would have decided which team would advance.
After Poland took the lead over Japan in the other game, a draw would have seen both Colombia and Senegal through, but Mina rose highest to head in Juan Quintero’s corner to put the South American side ahead.
It wasn’t all good news for Colombia, however, as talismanic forward James Rodriguez left the game in the first half with what appeared to be a recurrence of the calf injury that kept him out of their opening game.