Yerry Mina marked his first match at a World Cup finals by scoring the opening goal in Colombia’s 3-0 victory over Poland on Sunday.
The Barcelona defender was an unused substitute during Colombia’s opening match of the finals, a 2-1 defeat to Japan, but he was drafted into the starting line-up for Sunday’s clash in Kazan.
Both teams went into the Group H contest knowing a defeat would see them eliminated from the tournament, but it was Colombia that coped with that pressure better, with Mina giving them a deserved lead five minutes before the half-time interval.
Radamel Falcao and Juan Cuadrado added further goals for Jose Pekerman’s side after the restart, while defensively Mina, alongside Davinson Sanchez, kept Poland’s talisman Robert Lewandowski at bay.
Mina was certainly pleased with the way his World Cup debut unfolded, but he has already turned his attention to Colombia’s final group match – a clash with Senegal in Samara on Thursday.
“I was waiting for my moment to come,” Mina said after the match.
“We were focused for 90 minutes in a match that wasn’t easy. Senegal? Let’s go with everything we have!”
A victory against Senegal would guarantee Colombia’s passage through to the knockout stages, while a defeat would see them eliminated and a draw would mean they would need Poland to do them a favour by beating Japan.
The South Americans should certainly fancy their chances of beating Senegal, although the only previous meeting between the two sides ended in a 2-2 draw back in 2014.
Colombia are priced at 1.85 to win the contest this time around, while Senegal are available at 4.33 and the draw is on offer at 3.60.