World Cup state of play: Who has qualified for the last 16 and who will England play?

Find out who has reached the last 16 and who is heading home.

By Callum Davis Updated: 29 November 2022 - 5.04pm
An emotional Luis Suarez reacts Uruguay exit the World Cup

Who needs what to make it through to the World Cup round of 16 in Qatar? And who could soon be on their way home?

Here's everything you need to know as 32 teams become 16 in the race to be crowned the best team on the planet.

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Group A

The Netherlands and Senegal both booked their place in the last 16 after winning their final group games. 

Louis van Gaal's men topped Group A after overcoming hosts Qatar 2-0 thanks to goals from Golden Boot contender Cody Gakpo and Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong. They will now play Group B runners-up the USA on Saturday at 3pm after their 1-0 win over Iran. 

Senegal reached the knockout stage of a World Cup for the first time since 2002 after overcoming Ecuador 2-1. Ismaila Sarr's penalty just before the break put the Lions of Teranga in front and despite Moises Caicedo drawing the South Americans level with a close-range finish on 67 minutes, Chelsea centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly soon hammered in the winner. 

The AFCON champions will next face England on Sunday at 7pm after the Three Lions' 3-0 win over Wales

Full table

 

Group B

England ensured that they topped Group B after a 3-0 win over Wales, who were duly knocked out of the tournament. 

Marcus Rashford was named man of the match after two strikes either side of Phil Foden's finish. 

England face Senegal in the last 16, with the USA leapfrogging Iran into the knockout stage following a nervy 1-0 win. 

Knowing that nothing less than a victory would suffice, Gregg Berhalter's men scored the only goal of the contest on 38 minutes when Christian Pulisic tucked in Sergino Dest's header across goal, although Pulisic did need to come off shortly before half-time after a hefty collision as he scored.

The Stars and Stripes now face the Netherlands at 3pm on Saturday, with the Three Lions playing the Lions of Teranga at 7pm the same day. 

Full table

Julian Alvarez (No 9) scored Argentina's second goal in their win over Poland

Group C

Argentina recovered from their shock defeat to Saudi Arabia to top Group C with a comfortable 2-0 victory over Poland.

On the most dramatic night of the World Cup so far, the Eastern European team qualified in second place by virtue of having a marginally better goal difference than Mexico.

But at one point, with Mexico 2-0 up over Saudi Arabia, both countries had exactly the same goal difference and goals scored, which would have meant progression to the last 16 was decided by yellow cards.

Poland had picked up fewer bookings than Mexico, but they need not have worried as an injury-time goal from Saudi Arabia’s Salem Aldawsari made the outcome clear.

Czeslaw Michniewicz’s side made no attempt to get back into the game against a dominant Argentina outfit, who had seen Lionel Messi’s first-half penalty saved by Wojciech Szczesny.

Goals from Alexis Mac Allister and Julian Alvarez were enough for La Albiceleste, while Luis Chavez’s superb free-kick proved in vain for the heartbroken Mexicans.

Argentina will now play Australia in the round of 16 on Saturday at 7pm. Poland face world champions France on Sunday at 3pm.

Full table

Group D

Australia earned an unexpected place in the last 16 with an impressive 1-0 win over a disappointing Denmark side.

The Socceroos finished second on six points, above Tunisia despite the North Africans’ valiant effort to beat a much-changed France team.

Wahbi Khazri scored the only goal as Didier Deschamps opted to rest all of his key players with top spot in Group D secured.

It was Mathew Leckie who scored the key goal of the night, though, guiding a low shot past Kasper Schmeichel with an hour played to spark jubilant scenes in the stands and back home in Melbourne and Sydney.

Denmark were eliminated with just one point and bottom of the group having entered the tournament as one of the dark horses.

For Australia, the reward is a round-of-16 tie against Lionel Messi’s Argentina on Saturday at 7pm, while France will play Poland at 3pm on Sunday.

Full table

Kaoru Mitoma just kept the ball in play to set up Japan's winner against Spain - and knock Germany out

Group E

After a day of drama on Thursday, Japan ended up winning Group E and will now face Croatia in the round of 16 on Monday at 3pm.

Japan were underdogs going into their final group fixture against Spain and needed at least a point to give themselves a good chance of qualifying, with Germany playing Costa Rica in the other group fixture. 

In a match full of twists, Spain dominated possession in the first half and took an early lead through Alvaro Morata's header.

But the second half was a different story, with Ritsu Doan producing a ferocious drive to equalise after some hesitant goalkeeping from Unai Simon. 

Then just minutes later the real drama happened as Kaoru Mitoma salvaged a cross ball on the byline, cutting the ball back for Ao Tanaka to finish from close range. The ball looked like it had gone out of play, but VAR gave the goal and Japan held on for a famous and controversial victory that meant Germany were knocked out of the World Cup in the group stages for the second time running. 

Spain finished runners-up and will now face Morocco in the round of 16 on Tuesday at 3pm.

Despite Germany's 4-2 win, they're heading home - they needed Spain to get something out of their match to have any chance of qualifying. 

For five minutes midway through the second half, when Costa Rica and Japan were both winning 2-1, the North Americans were also heading through to the knockout stage, but a late collapse meant they finished bottom of the group. 

Full table

 

Group F

Belgium bowed out of the World Cup in the group stages after failing to beat Croatia in their final fixture.

Romelu Lukaku had a number of good chances towards the end of the match which, if he'd scored just one of them, would've seen Belgium qualify, but Croatia held on to secure second place in the group and will now face Japan in the round of 16 on Monday at 3pm.

Belgium's elimination was particularly crushing given that they sit second in the world rankings, and with Roberto Martinez leaving his role as manager after the final whistle, his successor has a big job on their hands to galvanise and refresh the squad ahead of Euro 2024. 

Morocco beat Canada 2-1 to secure their pathway through to the knockout stage as group winners, meaning they'll now face Spain in the round of 16 on Tuesday at 3pm. 

Heading into the final group fixture, Canada were already out of contention and simply playing for pride. 

Full table

Luis Suarez broke down in ears after Uruguay were eliminated from what is set to be his last World Cup

Group G

Switzerland secured their place in the round of 16 along with Brazil after beating Serbia 3-2 in a topsy-turvy encounter. 

Dragan Stojkovic's side knew that anything other than a victory would see heading home and they fell behind inside 20 minutes as Xherdan Shaqiri swept home. 

Aleksandar Mitrovic and Dusan Vlahovic then turned the match on its head before Breel Embolo equalised from close range, with Remo Freuler finding the winner after the break by converting Ruben Vargas' backheel. 

Murat Yakin's men in the end only just squeaked through as Cameroon surprisingly beat a much-changed Brazil side 1-0 courtesy of Vincent Aboubakar's header in the 92nd minute. 

Unfortunately for Aboubakar, he was booked for a second time in the game, this time for taking his shirt off in celebration. Had the Indomitable Lions managed to score a sensational second, then it would have been them rather than Switzerland progressing, while one more strike for the Swiss would have seen them leapfrog Brazil into top spot. 

As it is, Tite's favourites now face South Korea in the last 16 on Monday at 7pm, with Switzerland playing Portugal on Tuesday at the same kick-off time. 

Full table

 

Group H

With Portugal already through, it was up to one of Ghana, South Korea or Uruguay to seize the final qualifying spot. 

The African outfit were in the driving seat and faced a Uruguay side containing Luis Suarez, who produced that infamous handball in 2010 that ultimately knocked the Black Stars out of that year's World Cup. 

Otto Addo's men had a golden opportunity to take the lead after Sergio Rochet brought down Mohammed Kudus, but Andre Ayew saw his tame penalty saved and was made to pay for his wastefulness as Diego Alonso's men scored twice in quick succession through Giorgian de Arrascaeta. 

That was how things stayed - and it proved significant that Uruguay didn't scored a third.

In the other Group H match, South Korea fell behind early to Ricardo Horta's fifth-minute opener, before Kim Young-gwon slid in to equalise and then, right at the death, Son Heung-min slipped in Wolves' Hwang Hee-chan for the winner.

At that point, Uruguay's game against Ghana hadn't finished, with South Korea's players huddling around phones after full-time in their match to watch the final excruciating moments. 

The celebrations were some of the most incredible witnessed at this World Cup when Paulo Bento's men found they were through, with their reward for their late show being a meeting with Brazil on Monday at 7pm. Portugal meanwhile face Switzerland on Tuesday at the same kick-off time. 

 

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