THE DAY REPLAYED - The basic facts are these: Nigeria will play Germany in the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup Canada 2014 final after beating Korea DPR and France respectively. However, those bare outcomes represent just the final page of an enthralling semi-final story that showcased two different and equally thrilling kinds of football match.
The day's early game was all about one in-form team, with Nigeria carrying out a ruthless demolition job on a Korea DPR side fresh from unseating the defending champions. The Super Falconets' Asisat Oshoala undoubtedly emerged as the star of the day, illuminating this one-sided Moncton encounter with four goals that set all kind of records tumbling.
Montreal, meanwhile, witnessed a very different kind showdown of as two European heavyweights contested arguably the most engaging and unpredictable contest of the tournament thus far. And while France dominated and created by far the better of chances, Germany's clinical finishing and legendary will to win saw them through to what promises to be a classic final.
Korea DPR 2-6 Nigeria
Germany 2-1 France
Goal of the day
Korea DPR-Nigeria 1-4, Asisat Oshoala (24)
Having been responsible for a hefty percentage of the day's goals, Oshoala would have been rightly irked if one of her four strikes had failed to find its way into this section. Her second, sure enough, had no equal at either stadium, with the Nigeria star bursting effortlessly away from Jon So-Yon before curling a beautifully judged 20-yard shot into the top-right corner. It was the pinnacle of a performance that ranks among the best this tournament has seen, and bore all the hallmarks of a forward in the form of her life.
Falconets' speed sisters: Nigeria went into today's semi-final with their reputation as fast starters firmly established. They had, after all, already provided over recent matches the first and second-earliest goals in the history of the U-20 Women's World Cup through Courtney Dike and Oshoala. Korea DPR should have been warned therefore and yet, with less than two minutes gone, the Super Falconets had claimed the current edition's third-fastest goal - scored by Dike and laid on by Oshoala. Uchechi Sunday also reaffirmed her status as the tournament's ultimate impact substitute, scoring within a minute of coming off the bench for the second successive match.
Semi-final specialists: When you have had five shots to your opponents' 22, and your goalkeeper is named player of the match, that tends to tell its own story. But faced with Germany's supposed inferiority in all manner of statistics bar the scoreline, France coach Gilles Eyquem was unequivocal. "You cannot say they stole this result," he insisted, pointing out that, while Les Bleuettes had the superior technicians, the victors possessed players capable of carrying out the game's central, all-important task. France, of course, are not the first team to find Germany so ruthless in such circumstances. Indeed, it's no surprise that a side that consistently combines talent with an uncanny ability to grind out results has now won four U-20 Women's World Cup semi-finals - more than any other team in the tournament's history.
Fair play, fantastic football: This was Canada 2014's official FIFA Fair Play Day, which entailed the captains reading a short declaration and the opposing teams coming together to unveil a banner. But while the games were undoubtedly played in the right spirit, the character of the players on show was matched by their quality. Nigeria and Korea DPR set the tone by serving up the highest-scoring semi-final this tournament has ever witnessed, comfortably eclipsing Germany's 5-1 victory over Korea Republic in 2010. Germany and France, for their part, provided a match that was the perfect advert for this competition and women's football in general, with passion, panache and excitement all served up to another appreciative crowd.
7 - With seven goals to her name at Canada 2014, Asisat Oshoala has become Nigeria's leading U-20 Women's World Cup scorer. The Falconets' four-goal heroine, who made five appearances without finding the net at Japan 2012, moved beyond previous record-holders Desire Oparanozie, Ebere Orji and Cynthia Uwak - all of whom had five - when she completed her hat-trick. By increasing her tally further, she became only the third player in the tournament's history to score more than three times, following in the footsteps of the legendary Christine Sinclair and Kim Un-Hwa, the star of Korea DPR's 2006 triumph. Oshoala is also the new leader in the race to finish as Canada 2014's top scorer, with a two-goal cushion separating her from Germany duo Sara Dabritz and Pauline Bremer.
"I want to acknowledge what a great team France have and, because of that, it makes me twice as happy to have won today. Our girls gave everything but in some situations we got lucky. We were certainly lucky that our goalkeeper gave such an exceptional performance," Maren Meinert, Germany coach.
Sunday 24 August 2014 (all times local)
Third place play-off (Montreal)
Korea DPR-France, 16.00