France show their strength
© Foto-net

France heaved a sigh of relief after turning in a fine display to down Uruguay and claim top spot in Group A. Awaiting them in the last eight are Italy, who went down to the Portuguese a little earlier in the day. rounds up all the highlights from Monday's four games.

The result
France 4-3 Uruguay
Goals - Didier Samoun (2), Jeremy Basquaise (2) (France); Ricar, Parrillo, Oli (Uruguay)
There was a party atmosphere at the Stade du Prado as Eric Cantona's Bleus made sure of their place in the knockout rounds by snatching top spot in the section away from their South American opponents. The 2005 world champions rediscovered their defensive solidity to keep the Uruguayan attack at bay in the first two periods and were indebted to some fine finishing at the other end from the deadly duo of Samoun and Basquaise. All in all it was an encouraging performance from the French, who are improving with every game. Thursday's last-eight match-up with arch-rivals Italy promises much.

The other games
Inspired by three goals and an assist from the peerless Belchior, Portugal saw off a brave fightback from the Italians to eke out a 5-4 victory and win Group B in the process. The Lusitanians now square off against Uruguay in the next round. In the other game in the section Solomon Islands ran out 6-3 winners against El Salvador to take third spot. Over in Group A, Senegal kept their quarter-final chances alive in the day's third game when they beat Iran, a brace from Pape Koukpaki helping them to a 4-1 triumph. That left the African champions hoping for a favour from Uruguay in the closing match against France, but unfortunately for Koukpaki and Co their day was to end in disappointment.

The player
James Naka (SOL)
With his four-goal haul against El Salvador, the Solomon Islands sharpshooter helped his country to only their second win in three appearances at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup finals, the first coming in 2006, when another Naka quartet saw them to a 5-2 win over Cameroon.

The stat
7 -
 The number of goals Portugal's Belchior has already scored at Marseille 2008. The striker's last goal in the competition came in the 6-2 quarter-final defeat of Bahrain on 9 November 2006.

What they said
"This win may seem a little unexpected but that doesn't mean to say we're not going to enjoy it. The main thing is that we've reached our objectives of finishing first in the group and of qualifying for the quarter-finals. We want to go all the way now." Didier Samoun, France forward.

All the results
Portugal 5-4 Italy
El Salvador 3-6 Solomon Islands
Senegal 4-1 Iran
France 4-3 Uruguay