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Argentina, Switzerland, Belgium, US Clash in World Cup

  • VOA Staff

Belgium's captain Vincent Kompany, second right, who is recovering from an injury, keeps a ball up as he takes part in a training session at Estadio Manoel Barradas the day before the World Cup round of 16 soccer match against Belgium, June 30, 2014.

Belgium's captain Vincent Kompany, second right, who is recovering from an injury, keeps a ball up as he takes part in a training session at Estadio Manoel Barradas the day before the World Cup round of 16 soccer match against Belgium, June 30, 2014.

The World Cup field will be trimmed to just eight teams Tuesday in Brazil with two matches deciding the final spots in the tournament's quarterfinal round.

In Sao Paulo, Lionel Messi leads undefeated Argentina against Switzerland having scored four of his team's six goals so far in this World Cup. The Swiss will look to Xherdan Shaqiri, who scored three times in their final match of group play.

Later in Salvador, the United States takes on Belgium, which won all of its group matches but did not score in any of those contests until the final 20 minutes.

Altidore cleared to play

The Americans will get a boost from star forward Jozy Altidore, who was injured in the team's opening win, but has been medically cleared to play Tuesday.

On Monday, France and Germany earned their spots in the quarterfinals.

Algeria put up a valiant effort against heavily favored Germany, battling to a scoreless deadlock in regulation. But it took less than two minutes for the Germans to find the net in extra time as Andre Schurrle scored from close range, while heavily guarded, by flicking the ball off the side of his foot.

Mesut Ozil put Germany ahead 2-0 in the 120th minute, and Algeria prevented a shutout with a goal a minute later in stoppage time by Abdelmoumene Djabou to make the final, 2-1.

France shuts out Nigeria

France shut out Nigeria with two late goals, 2-0, and will face Germany in the quarterfinals Friday in Rio de Janeiro .

Similar to other matches in the knockout stage, the France-Nigeria game in Brasilia was not decided until late. Paul Pogba scored on a header off a corner kick in the 79th minute to break a scoreless deadlock and give France the lead.

In stoppage time action at the end of the regulation 90 minutes, Nigerian Joseph Yobo accidentally knocked the ball into his own goal to give France its second goal in the 2-0 victory.

Brazil and Colombia will face off in the other quarterfinal match Friday. On Saturday, Costa Rica will play the Netherlands, and the two winners from Tuesday will play each other.

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