Why Senegal was eliminated from the World Cup thanks to yellow cards

Senegal will play against Colombia in their final group game

Yerry Mina's 74th-minute header at the Samara Arena this afternoon turned Group H on its head with Japan also going through as runners-up despite losing 1-0 to Poland.

Colombia is through to the World Cup round of 16 while Senegal has been eliminated because of a harsh yellow card tiebreaker. Neither team had red cards, while Japan had four yellow cards as opposed to Senegal's six, meaning the Samurai Blue edges out the Lions of Teranga.

Colombia had it all to do to book a spot in the last 16, with Senegal only needing a point to advance.

Japan will face the victor of Group G on Monday.

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However, it was never proved if the match was thrown, but henceforth all final group matches were played together. Japan coach Akira Nishino has warned his players against complacency when they meet the already eliminated Poles.

Senegal and Japan finished the group with an identical record of points, goal difference and goals scored, with the former knocked out by virtue of having accumulated two more yellow cards.

Colombia didn't look the same after he went off, resorting to the pace of Juan Cuadrado out wide to make something happen. Goalkeeper Khadim N'Diaye could have done better as Mina leaped highest to score his fifth goal in 14 games for his national team. "It led to the goals and now we have a good position in this World Cup", Colombia coach Jose Pekerman said after the victory.

Colombia is the only team in Russian Federation to lose its opener - 2-1 to Japan - and make it to the round of 16. Teammate Radamel Falcao patted him on the back sympathetically as he headed to the sideline.

News of Jan Bednarek's goal for Poland gave a lift to fans of both Colombia and Senegal as the tension levels in Samara continued to rise.

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Senegal kept trying to get a goal that would have sent it to the next round, but Colombia defended well.

However, after consultation with the Video Assistant Referee, Serbian referee Milorad Mazic overturned his own decision and signaled only a drop ball. Sanchez received criticisms and a death threat, which is being investigated by Colombian authorities.

After Nigeria pushed Argentina all the way in their final group game, Senegal became the latest African outfit to suffer heartbreak at the hands of South American opposition and their exit was arguably even harder to take.

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