World Cup round of 16: Group permutations

With the second set of matches over, Goal takes a look at which teams are qualified, which ones are going home and which are still battling to make the knockout stage.

Despite being held by Mexico in its second match, Brazil is still in pole position heading into the final round of fixtures, knowing a win over already-eliminated Cameroon will likely see it top Group A. The Selecao aren't guaranteed to qualify though — if they lose and Cameroon-Croatia ends in a draw, they will be out.

In order to finish on top of the group, meanwhile, Mexico must overcome its inferior goal difference by beating Croatia by two goals more than Luiz Felipe Scolari's men defeat the Indomitable Lions — but El Tri need only a point to qualify in at least second. 

Croatia is still in control of its own destiny but must beat Mexico to have any hope of advancing.



Qualification is already decided in Group B, with both the Netherlands and Chile having won their first two matches, while Australia and world champion Spain remain pointless.

Monday's clash between the Netherlands and Chile will decide who tops the group. Whoever wins is guaranteed to advance as the winner, while a draw would suit Louis van Gaal's men, who boast a slightly better goal difference.

Spain versus Australia is a dead rubber, offering no more than a chance for both sides to garner a little pride before leaving Brazil.



Colombia has qualified from Group C with a match to spare and knows only a defeat to Japan and a four-goal swing in favor of Cote d'Ivoire can deny it the top spot.

The Elephants must beat Greece to be entirely sure of progressing, though a draw will be enough if Colombia remains unbeaten in the tournament against Japan.

Only a win and a Cote d'Ivoire slip up will see Japan qualify, though a defeat for the Africans would be best for Alberto Zaccheroni's men as they have a slightly inferior goal difference.

Greece is still alive but faces a tough task. It must defeat Cote d'Ivoire and hope Japan does not beat Colombia as it has the worst goal difference in Group C.



Costa Rica goes into its final match safe in the knowledge that its place in the knockout stages is already assured and, thanks to its goal difference, only a heavy defeat to an already-eliminated England can put its position as group leader in jeopardy.

Group D's other match is far more interesting, with Uruguay taking on Italy with everything on the line. Italy's slightly better goal difference means a point will be enough for it, but both teams know a win will see them into the round of 16.

England is out and playing for pride against Costa Rica.



France took just two matches to book its place in the round of 16 in emphatic style, scoring eight goals, and its goal difference makes it impossible to see Les Bleus finishing as anything less than the group winner, regardless of their result against Ecuador at the Maracana on Wednesday.

This could work in the favor of the South Americans, who must match the result of Switzerland against already-eliminated Honduras to go through as the runner-up.

Ottmar Hitzfeld's men have paid the price for their heavy 5-2 defeat to France and their poor goal difference means they must beat Honduras and hope for a favor in Group E's other match.



Group F is already clearly defined, with Argentina through after taking maximum points from its first two matches and Nigeria only a point away from joining it.

The two sides meet Wednesday in Porto Alegre, with the Super Eagles needing a win to top the group and Alejandro Sabella's men needing a point to do the same. A draw would see both qualify.

Iran still harbors faint hopes of making the round of 16 but must beat already-eliminated Bosnia-Herzegovina while hoping Argentina defeats Nigeria. There also needs to be a two-goal swing in goal difference in the Asian side's favor.



Every team in Group G is still alive, though Germany and the USA face each other in Recife on Thursday knowing that a draw will see both into the last 16.

Germany sits on top of the group courtesy of a superior goal difference and knows that, even in defeat, a considerable goal swing would be required to prevent it from going through as the runner-up at worst.

Both Ghana and Portugal will hope for a Germany win, as it would mean a win in Brasilia on Thursday would give either a chance of overhauling the USA in the race for second place, though Portugal's poor goal difference counts against it.



Belgium needed just two matches to qualify from the group stage of its first World Cup since 2002, and only an unikely combination of results can deny it the top spot.

Algeria, in second, knows a point will likely see it qualify as the runner-up. But the African side can still go through as the winner if it beats Russia and Belgium loses to South Korea.

Russia remains in control of its own destiny but knows only a win against Algeria will see it advance, while South Korea needs an emphatic win against the group leader and favors elsewhere to stay in the tournament.