World Cup, Group A: Russia, Uruguay to battle it out for top spot


World Cup, Group A: Russia, Uruguay to battle it out for top spot Preview/Analysis World Cup

  • Russia and Uruguay won their previous matches.
  • Egypt and Saudi Arabia have lost their previous matches
  • The top two teams in each group go into the Round of .
  • FIFA has put in place seven tie-breakers for distinct ranking of four team in a group

Hosts Russia will continue their World Cup charge whatever the outcome of their final Group A game on Monday.

They take on Uruguay in Samara with top spot up for grabs, but progression to the last 16 already in the bag.

A dream start to the competition has made a mockery of Stanislav Cherchesov’s side’s status as the lowest-ranked side in the showpiece.

World Cup, Group A: Russia, Uruguay to battle it out for top spot Preview/Analysis World Cup

Their 5-0 opening day thumping of Saudi Arabia was backed up by a 3-1 success over Egypt in St. Petersburg.

Luis Suarez and Co need a win if they want Uruguay to top the pile and take on the runners-up from Group B in the first knockout stage. That could well prove to be either of the European heavyweights Spain or Portugal. The South Americans have quite clicked yet in sneaking a pair of 1-0 wins over both pool strugglers.

Egypt have endured a miserable tournament, despite boasting the talent of Mohamed Salah in their ranks. Defeats to Russia and Uruguay have left only pride to play for as they face Saudi Arabia before heading home. The Saudis also have passports in pockets ahead of their departure, despite an improved performance in their second fixture against Uruguay. Their thumping by Russia in the curtain-raiser will live long in the memory – and not in a good way. Goal difference will see the Pharaohs finish third if the pair reach a stalemate at the Volgograd Arena.

How the teams will be ranked in their respective groups

1. Points obtained in all group matches

2. Goal difference in all group matches

3. Goals scored in all group matches

4. Points obtained in matches between tied teams

5. Goal difference in matches between tied teams

6. Goals scored in matches between tied teams

7. Fair play points system where the team with the most minus points finishing lower

The fair play points are calculated as follows: yellow card (-1), indirect red through second yellow (-3), straight red card (-4). This is most likely only to come into play in two-team ties and even then is unlikely – but will be used if England and Belgium draw tonight.

8. Drawing of lots by the Fifa Organising Committee