By: Gyang Dakwo
Brazil trounced Dominican Republic 6-0 on Wednesday to keep alive its chances of advancing to the knockout stage of the Under-20 World Cup.
The Brazilians are 1-1 and three points behind unbeaten Group D leader Nigeria, which beat Italy 2-0.
Nigeria will next face Brazil on Saturday and Italy will take on the Dominicans, setting up the prospect of goal difference being a decisive factor for qualification.
The top two teams in each group plus the four best third-placed teams will progress to the Round of 16.
The Brazilian team, which lost 3-2 to Italy in its first group match, did not face any resistance from Dominican Republic throughout the match in Mendoza, with goals coming from Sávio (37th minute), Marcos Leonardo (38), Jean (57), Giovane (82) and in stoppage time from Marlon Gomes and Matheus Martins.
Earlier in the same city, Salim Lawal’s diving header gave Nigeria the lead in the 61st minute and Jude Sunday sealed the victory against Italy in stoppage time, piling pressure on a team that started the tournament among the favorites.
Senegal drew 1-1 with Israel and will need to beat Colombia on Saturday to have a chance of advancing. The Israelis opened the scoring in La Plata in the 58th with an own goal by Babacar Ndiaye. Pape Demba Diop equalized in the 80th.
Colombia leads Group C after a 2-1 win against Japan. Riku Yamane opened the scoring for Japan on the half-hour, but Yaser Asprilla and Tomás Ángel led the Colombians to their second victory with goals in the 53rd and 59th.
Colombia has six points after two rounds, three clear of Japan and five ahead of Senegal and Israel.