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Belguim wins wild one, Neymar leads Brazil

  • elgium's Nacer Chadli, center, scores his third side goal during the round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena, in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar) Hassan Ammar

  • Belgium's Nacer Chadli, left, celebrates with teammates after scoring his third side's goal during the round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena, in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell) Rebecca Blackwell

  • Belgium's Marouane Fellaini scores his side's second goal with his head during the round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena, in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek) Petr David Josek

  • Japan's Genki Haraguchi, right, celebrates with teammate Japan's Yuya Osakohis after scoring his first side goal during the round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena, in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar) Hassan Ammar

  • Japan's Takashi Inui, left, celebrates after scoring his second side goal during the round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena, in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar) Hassan Ammar

  • Belgium's Jan Vertonghen, right, run on the pitch after scoring his first side goal during the round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena, in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar) Hassan Ammar

  • Japan goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima, left, tries to save a ball kicked by Belgium's Jan Vertonghen who scored his first side goal during the round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena, in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar) Hassan Ammar

  • Belgium's Eden Hazard, right, vies for the ball with Japan's Makoto Hasebe during the round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena, in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko) Natacha Pisarenko

  • Belgium's Marouane Fellaini celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during the round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena, in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko) Natacha Pisarenko

  • Brazil's Neymar celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during the round of 16 match between Brazil and Mexico at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Samara Arena, in Samara, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein) Frank Augstein

  • Brazil's Neymar, right, prepares to kick the ball and score during the round of 16 match between Brazil and Mexico at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Samara Arena, in Samara, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits) Sergei Grits

  • Brazil's Neymar, left, celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during the round of 16 match between Brazil and Mexico at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Samara Arena, in Samara, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein) Frank Augstein

  • Brazil's Neymar gestures on the ground during the round of 16 match between Brazil and Mexico at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Samara Arena, in Samara, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis) Thanassis Stavrakis



Associated Press
Monday, July 02, 2018

ROSTOV-ON-DON, Russia — Nacer Chaldi capped a comeback from a two-goal deficit when he scored in the fourth minute of injury time to give Belgium a 3-2 victory over Japan on Monday and a spot in the World Cup quarterfinals.

Japan led 2-0 on early second-half goals by Genki Haraguchi and Takashi Inui.

Jan Vertonghen then scored with a looping header that appeared to be a cross but dropped in under the crossbar in the 69th minute. Substitute Marouane Fellaini headed in another from Eden Hazard’s cross in the 74th.

Chaldi, who came on as a substitute in the 65th, decided it in injury time.

Belgium goalkeeper Thibault Courtois grabbed a corner kick and rolled the ball to Kevin De Bruyne, who dribbled to the top of the center circle and passed to Thomas Meunier on the right. Meunier one-timed the ball across the area and Romelu Lukaku let it roll by for Chaldi to tap in with his left foot from 7 yards.

The end-to-end attack took only 10 seconds.

Belgium is the first team to overturn a two-goal deficit in a World Cup knockout match since West Germany beat England in extra time at the 1970 tournament.

Belgium will next face Brazil in the quarterfinals on Friday in Kazan.

Brazil 2, Mexico 0 — Neymar flaunted his flair and his theatrics with a goal and an assist Monday to lead Brazil into the quarterfinals at the World Cup with a 2-0 victory over Mexico.

The world’s most expensive player put Brazil in the lead after his back-heel released Willian, who then sent the ball into the penalty area. Neymar slid in to tap in the opener in the 51st minute.

Neymar then showed his unselfish side, crossing for Robert Firmino to score in the 88th minute. Neymar has 11 goals and nine assists in his last 19 games for Brazil.

It looked like Neymar’s game — or even his World Cup — could be over with 20 minutes to go. It turned out to be pure histrionics. Writhing in agony after his right ankle was stepped on by Miguel Layun, Neymar managed to get back on his feet. But not before trying a stamp on Layun himself. Both escaped punishment.

The five-time World Cup champions will next face either Japan or Belgium in their seventh straight quarterfinal match, the stage they have reached at every World Cup since 1994.

Not so for the Mexicans, who have lost in the round of 16 seven straight times.