Colombia win 3-0 to knock Poland out of World Cup

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Colombia brushed aside Poland 3-0 in Kazan on Sunday to boost their hopes of reaching the World Cup knockout stage as captain Radamel Falcao starred with a goal and an assist.

Colombia's players celebrate at the end of the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup Group H football match between Poland and Colombia at the Kazan Arena in Kazan on June 24, 2018.

Midfielder James Rodriguez, victor of the Golden Boot at the last World Cup, returned to the starting lineup after an injury and played a part in two of the goals as Colombia got back on track after their opening loss to Japan. Poland had huge support inside the Spartak Stadium and are the seeded team in Group H - but they were disappointing in all areas during their opening defeat by Senegal.

Senegal and Japan drew 2-2 earlier Sunday and lead the group with four points each.

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After a quiet spell in the clash, Yerry Mina finally broke the deadlock for Colombia five minutes before the break with a clinical header inside the box following a teasing cross from James Rodriguez, 0-1.

Colombia saw off the danger and doubled the lead after 70 minutes when Quintero's pass allowed Falcao to beat the last defender before stroking the ball past Szczesny with the outside of his boot.

Colombia gradually settled in, though, with Quintero providing attacking width and Cuadrado proving risky with his subtle moves on the edge of the box.

Poland's offensive tactics were limited to launching long balls towards Lewandowski and although Colombia were trying to play the ball on the floor, they could not get their passes to stick. Quintero came close in the 56th minute on the break, but his goal-bound shot took a deflection.

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There will be a weight of expectation on his shoulders when Colombia face Senegal in their final group game on Thursday.

On loan from Real Madrid, Bayern Munich midfielder James Rodriguez was back in Colombia's starting XI after recovering from his calf injury. "We tried to attack but there was no fluid play".

Poland has now failed to keep a clean sheet in its last 10 World Cup matches, since beating Portugal 1-0 in 1986.

"I'm very sorry and very sad about the result, but tomorrow's another day and we have to come to terms with things", said Poland coach Adam Nawalka.

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