Eduardo Vargas of Chile celebrates his goal against Spain during the World Cup on June 18. MCT PHOTO
World Cup roundup: COL-URU, BRA-CHI (June 28)
Second round: Colombia 2, Uruguay 0
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — With a spectacular swivel-and-strike, James Rodriguez provided one of the highlights of the World Cup and gave Brazil reason to worry.
Rodriguez scored one of the best goals of the tournament and added a second to put Colombia into the World Cup quarterfinals for the first time with a 2-0 win over Uruguay on Saturday — setting up a meeting with the host nation.
"I think now the toughest is coming up," Rodriguez said of the quarterfinal match against Brazil. "I'm happy because we are making history and as a young man I dreamed of being here. And of course we want to do even more."
Rodriguez now has a tournament-leading five goals in Brazil and further enhanced his status as perhaps the World Cup's biggest revelation. In the absence of injured star Radamel Falcao, the Monaco winger has become the focal point of a Colombia team that won all three of its group games with impressive attacking play.
Colombia is playing its first World Cup since 1998 and has already achieved its best-ever result.
"Congratulations to all the Colombian people," said coach Jose Pekerman, who is from Argentina. "The people in Colombia deserve this."
Colombia will play Brazil in the quarterfinals on July 4 in Fortaleza after the host nation beat Chile in a penalty shootout earlier Saturday.
Second round: BRAZIL 1(3), CHILE 1(2)
BELO HORIZONTE, Brazil (AP) — Brazil advanced to the World Cup quarterfinals on Saturday with a 3-2 shootout win over Chile following a tense and thrilling battle that ended 1-1 after extra time.
Neymar, David Luiz and Marcelo scored in the shootout, and Brazil goalkeeper Julio Cesar saved two penalties before watching Gonzalo Jara's final attempt hit the post.
"My teammates are giving me a lot of strength on the field so I give my best," Cesar said. "We're just three steps away and I hope to give another interview with Brazil partying."
Brazil, which extended its 39-year unbeaten streak in home competitive matches to 61, will next face either Colombia or Uruguay in the quarterfinals.
Brazil has reached the quarterfinals of each World Cup since Argentina eliminated it in the second round in 1990. Getting knocked out at that stage in its own World Cup would have been a disaster.