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Poland vs Colombia. FIFA World Cup Group H.

Kazan ArenaAttendance42,873.

Poland 0

    Colombia 3

    • Y Mina (40th minute)
    • Falcao (70th minute)
    • J Cuadrado (75th minute)

    Poland v Colombia preview: Must-win game for group favourites after first-day defeats

    Poland v Colombia

    Group favourites Poland and Colombia meet in a must-win game to keep alive a strong chance of reaching the World Cup last 16.

    Colombia suffered a 2-1 defeat to Japan with Yuya Osako scoring a 73rd-minute winner in their opening match.

    Former Chelsea and Manchester United striker Radamel Falcao admits Colombia are already reaching an all-or-nothing situation in just their second game of the tournament.

    Radamel Falcao in action for Colombia
    Image: Radamel Falcao in action for Colombia

    "We are in a situation in which we are forced to win. And we must do everything possible to win," Falcao said at Colombia's training base in Sviyazhsk just outside Kazan.

    "We are now facing two teams who need to win, so for us these games will be like finals. It's them or us. We've already put the Japan match behind us.

    "The simple fact we're still in contention at the World Cup gives us the emotional drive we need for these two games we have remaining."

    Poland lost to 2-1 to Senegal in their opener, with Grzegorz Krychowiak scoring a late header from a free-kick.

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    Colombia forward Radamel Falcao says both teams must win when they face Poland on Sunday night

    "We know very well what is this game about, but we are optimists," said Poland defender Bartosz Bereszynski. "One thing I am sure about is that we will not lack heart on Sunday."

    Over the past four World Cups, only four of 46 teams to lose their first game have qualified for the last 16 - but victory for either of these two in Kazan on Sunday will certainly reignite their tournaments.

    It is the first competitive meeting between Colombia and Poland, but against European opposition the South Americans have endured a difficult recent history, losing five and drawing two of their last nine at World Cups.

    Team news

    Kamil Glik may present a welcome return for Poland at the heart of defence, having missed out on the defeat to Senegal with a sprained shoulder.

    Kamil Glik, who missed Poland's game with Senegal through injury
    Image: Kamil Glik, who missed Poland's game with Senegal through injury

    There are no new injury concerns for Colombia, who could hand James Rodriguez a first start of the tournament after he came off the bench against Japan last time out.

    Opta stats

    • This will be the first competitive meeting between Poland and Colombia - the South Americans won the most recent friendly 2-1 in Chorzow in 2006.
    • Colombia have won only two of their nine previous World Cup games against European opponents (D2 L5), though these victories have come in their last four such meetings against Switzerland in 1994 and Greece in 2014.
    • None of Poland's nine World Cup games against South American opponents has finished as a draw, with the Eagles winning four and losing five.
    • Only once before have Colombia lost both of their opening two games in a World Cup tournament, doing so against Romania and the USA back in 1994.
    • None of Colombia's 19 games at the World Cup have ended goalless.
    • Poland have lost seven of their last nine World Cup matches (W2), failing to score in six of those losses.
    • Poland have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last nine World Cup matches, since beating Portugal 1-0 in 1986.
    • Juan Quintero became the first Colombian player to score in two different World Cup tournaments in their opening defeat against Japan (2014 and 2018).
    • Despite failing to score against Senegal in Poland's opening match, Robert Lewandowski has netted 21 goals in his last 16 appearances for his national team.
    • Colombian Carlos Sanchez's red card in their opening match against Japan was the first dismissal at the 2018 World Cup and was also Colombia's first ever sending off in the competition.

    Merson's predictions

    How much would you pay for Robert Lewandowski after his performance against Senegal? Not much. He was unbelievably bad. I wasn't impressed with Poland in their opener. Colombia will be a different proposition with 11 men on the pitch, they'll bounce back.

    PAUL PREDICTS: 1-2 (8/1 with Sky Bet)


    Colombia are Sky Bet favourites at 23/20 to beat Poland, who themselves are priced at 12/5 for the win, with the draw coming at 5/2. Robert Lewandowski is 7/2 to open the scoring, tied with Radamel Falcao is tied at 7/2 favourites to break the deadlock. Colombia are 66/1 to win the World Cup with Poland priced at 150/1.

    Place your bet by clicking here.

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