Mean Defences The Order Of The Day
After the first weekend's avalanche of goals, the teams on Week Two displayed a mastery in the art of defence as the final 8 teams qualified for the Round Of 16 on a day where only 33 goals were shipped across all 4 groups.
Both Singapore teams made it through unbeaten, with only 1 goal conceded between them, as they qualified for the next round as Champions of their respective groups.
Singapore A kicked off their campaign with a 3-0 win over neighbours Indonesia in Group D, before two consecutive goal-less draws against Tibet and New Zealand saw them through as group champions.
The Kiwis managed to clinch second place against a combative Tibet thanks to a superior goal difference, in a tight group where the top three teams were tied at 5 points a piece.
The Indonesians, with a team averaging just 20 years old, were up against some wily old foxes and were not able to make their mark in the tournament.
There was to be heartbreak for everyone's favourite Belgium, who made a series of unforced errors to gift China a 2-1 win in the opening game of Group E. They did recover to beat Iceland by 3 goals, but a final 0-0 draw against table toppers Italy meant they lose the coveted second spot to China by a single point.
The Italians, determined not to make the same mistakes as their more illustrious counterparts in Europe, stormed to the next round as Champions of their group, scoring 5 and conceding only one, against fellow qualifiers China.
Iceland were unfortunately eliminated after failing to score against any of their opponents.
Minnows Somalia showed the world they are more than just a name on the fixture list by seeing off Poland and North Korea to top Group G. Following them to the next round are the North Koreans, who had to wait till the Somalians dispatched the Polish off with a bigger victory margin of 3-0 before they could book their flights to the next round.
Singapore B were in no rush to score in their first game, until a calamitous mishap at the back gifted France an unexpected opener. The 'B' team though recovered to score four in return, before sealing top spot with a 2-0 win over second placed Scotland in Group H.
Scotland was the last team to qualify for the day, their 1-0 victory over the French proving decisive as the French were left without a point to their name at the end of the group stages.
A professional armchair football critic, Boonadine Limdane has been writing about football since forever! His eloquent use of emphatic phrases and his cunning linguistic abilities is the only thing that sets him apart from his footballing mates. Other than his absolute lack of ball-sense on the pitch.
When he is not tormenting readers with his grammar (or lack-thereof), he can be found playing a round of golf in Malaysia, another sport that he has reached new levels of terrible in.