Spain under pressure, Niger need an upset
** Matchday 3 in Groups C and D
** Every team in both groups can still qualify
** Korea DPR, Costa Rica and Guinea must win
DAY PREVIEW - Two matchdays into the FIFA U-17 World Cup India 2017, Iran and Brazil have already sealed their spots in the last 16 from Groups C and D, respectively. However, the other three sides in each pool can still qualify for the next phase, heading into the groups' final games.
In Group C, the task facing Costa Rica and Guinea is simple: win or go home. Germany, for their part, will also progress to the next round if they win or if they draw against Guinea, and Costa Rica fail to beat Iran.
In Group D, Korea DPR must win to keep their U-17 World Cup campaign going, while a draw could see European champions Spain progress. Whether the same outcome will be enough for Niger will depend on results in the other groups. A win for the debutants from Africa would see them through outright, but beating Brazil will require a minor miracle.
The games *Group C Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Goa* Costa Rica – Iran
Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium, Kochi Guinea – Germany
Group D Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Goa *Niger – Brazil*
Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium, Kochi Spain – Korea DPR
What you need to know It is 16 matches since Germany last drew a game at the FIFA U-17 World Cup, winning ten games and losing six since a 3-3 stalemate with Colombia in 2009. Funnily enough, a point in their final group match here against Guinea could be enough to take them into the knockout phase.
The differences between two of the Matchday 3 opponents could hardly be any greater. On one hand you have Brazil, the country with the most appearances (77), most wins (49) and the most goals (170) in U-17 World Cup history, and who have failed to qualify for the tournament only once (in 1993 in Japan). On the other hand, there is Niger, who crowned their first-ever appearance in the competition with a stunning win against Korea DPR, but who were then brought back down to earth with a 4-0 loss to Spain on Matchday Two. Now, they must take at least a point from the Canarinha, if they are to keep their World Cup dream alive.
The stat 23 - Will Costa Rica be able to rely on Ricardo Montenegro once again? The Ticos' goalkeeper has excelled in both games so far, making a total of 23 saves (nine against Germany and 14 against Guinea). Perhaps that is to be expected, considering he learned his trade at the same club in Costa Rica as his compatriot and idol Keylor Navas.
The quote "Good teams make you pay for mistakes immediately, and Spain are absolutely one of those sides. So what will I tell my players? Firstly, that this is our last chance to get through to the next round. Secondly, I'll give them the confidence they need to be able to compete with the Spanish." Korea DPR coach Kim Yong-Su