Tottenham defender Sanchez plays his part in helping Colombia finish top of Group H
- Credit: PA Archive/PA Images
The Spurs centre back made a stunning tackle in the first half which helped his country go on to beat Senegal
Tottenham Hotspur defender Davinson Sanchez played a crucial role in helping his country Colombia qualify for the last-16 of the World Cup this afternoon.
The 22-year-old played the full 90 minutes in their 1-0 win over Senegal in Group H and it was his efforts at the back which saw them secure a crucial clean sheet.
Colombia’s win saw them finish top ahead of Japan, who dropped to second after a defeat to Poland.
It was a turn-up for the books with Sanchez’s nation beginning the day in third place and not on course to reach the knock-out stage.
They knew a victory over Senegal would take them through, but expected to come in second place.
A goal from Poland’s Southampton centre back Jan Bednarek saw Japan trail and once Yerry Mina put Colombia in front, it allowed the South Americans to take first position in Group G.
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Sanchez was involved in a crucial moment during the first half where he initially gave away a penalty for a tackle on Sadio Mane.
The Spurs defender slide in on the Liverpool attacker inside the penalty area and the referee Milorad Mazic pointed to the spot.
But Video Assistant Referee (VAR) overruled the decision with replays showing the Tottenham man got the ball with a well-timed tackle.
It helped keep the score goalless at the break and proved crucial as Colombia took the lead in the 74th minute through Mina.
The goal took the South Americans to the top of Group H and they held out for the win to give themselves a more favourable route in the knock-out phase.
Colombia and Sanchez will play one of England or Belgium in the last-16 on July 3 (Tuesday) at 7pm, but have managed to avoid the likes of France, Argentina, Uruguay and Portugal at least until the latter stages of the tournament.