Heads up Jordan, it's Spain

BOB MACKIN -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 7:41 AM ET

It will be must-win time for Jordan when it meets Spain at 2:15 p.m. tomorrow in the FIFA Under-20 World Cup at Burnaby's Swangard Stadium.

Jordan is playing in its first FIFA tournament after knocking out China in Asian qualifying. Justice, it seems, after China sent a makeshift squad of 16 and 17-year-olds masquerading as its under-20 national team to last year's Whitecaps Nations Cup.

Jordan was lucky to tie Zambia 1-1 in the teams' opening match on Sunday. Likewise, Jordan was unlucky not to beat Uruguay on Wednesday.

Mauro Goicoechea escaped with a 1-0 shutout thanks to Edinson Cavani's 40th minute goal and help from his goalposts.

Raed Fraeh hit the post in the 44th minute after a failed clearance by Uruguay's Gary Kagelmacher bounced off referee Peter O'Leary.

Spain remains unbeaten after scoring two first-half goals Wednesday to edge Zambia 2-1.

Mario Suarez succeeded on a 30th minute penalty kick and Juan Manuel Mata doubled the lead on a half-volley in the 40th. Zambia's William Njobvu ruined Adan's shutout bid in the 74th.

Spain is the de facto "home team" - 216 years ago yesterday, Spanish explorer Jose Maria Narvaez became the first European to navigate local waters when he sailed past Point Grey. Zambia, however, captured the hearts of Swangard fans with its gutsy, sometimes brilliant play. The white and green-clad African lads meet Uruguay at 2:15 p.m. in Victoria tomorrow.

Costa Rica and Scotland will likely be playing for pride when they cross over to Swangard for tomorrow's 5 p.m. match. Neither team has a point in Group F standings.

Scotland has disappointed its Tartan Army supporters after losing 3-1 to Japan and 2-0 to Nigeria. Costa Rica fell by 1-0 scores to Japan and Nigeria, also in games at Victoria's Royal Athletic Park.

First round standings won't be complete until the last four games are played Sunday.

Swangard will host a second-round match on Wednesday at 8:15 p.m. featuring the first place team from group B and a third-place team from group A, C or D.

- In the sweltering 32C heat of Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton, Canada lost out to Austria in a tightly-fought deal that ended in a 1-0 score yesterday in Group A action.

Austria's Rubin Okotie headed in the game's only goal from a corner kick in front of a energetic crowd of 31,579.

Next up for Canada is against Congo tomorrow at 5 p.m. local time, also in Edmonton.


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