ISTANBUL: France clinched a maiden under-20 World Cup title on Saturday (Sunday in Manila) after defeating Uruguay 4-1 on penalties following a goalless draw in Istanbul.
Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper Alphonse Areola was the hero for France as he saved spot-kicks from Emiliano Velazquez and Giorgian De Arrascaeta in the shootout before Dimitri Foulquier swept the winning penalty beyond Uruguay’s Guillermo De Amores.
Both ‘keepers were instrumental in sending the game to extra time, and latterly penalties, with Areola making crucial stops to deny Nicolas Lopez and Felipe Avenatti during the regulation 90 minutes, while De Amores produced two sharp saves to keep out Jordan Veretout and Alexy Bosetti in the closing stages of normal time.
Earlier, Ghana secured third place after beating Iraq 3-0 with goals from Joseph Attamah, Ebenezer Assifuah and Frank Acheampong.
In Utah, Chris Wondolowski scored twice as the United States men’s national team routed Cuba 4-1 in a CONCACAF Gold Cup contest on Saturday (Sunday in Manila).
Wondolowski now has five goals in two Gold Cup matches after scoring a first half hat trick in a 6-1 hammering of Belize on Tuesday.
Landon Donovan and Joe Corona Crespin also scored at Rio Tinto Stadium for the Americans, who advanced to the Gold Cup quarterfinals.
Cuba started quickly, scoring the first goal in the 36th minute when Jose Nieto Martinez smashed a half-volley past goalkeeper Nick Rimando.
Donovan tied the contest by scoring on a penalty kick before the close of the first half after American Edgar Castillo was brought down in the box.
The Americans then dominated the second half as Corona Crespin notched his first career international goal in the 57th minute to give the USA a 2-1 lead.