Senegal eliminated from 2018 World Cup due to Fair Play rule (Explanation)

Youssouf Sabaly of Senegal tackles Juan Cuadrado of Colombia during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group H match between Senegal and Colombia at Samara Arena on June 28, 2018 in Samara, Russia.
Stu Forster/Getty Images Europe
Senegal were eliminated from Russia 2018 World cup on the "Fair Play Rule".

The Africans needed to avoid defeat in the match against Colombia but lost 1-0 to a Yeri Mina header. Japan meanwhile lost 1-0 to Poland in the other game also.

Fans were booing both teams in Poland vs Japan game as both teams seemed satisfied with the scores, Japan refused to attack despite been behind against Poland because they knew they had a better fair play score than Senegal.

The Blue Samurai had -4(four yellow cards) while the Teranga Lions had -6(six yellow cards) which means the former will go through.

Senegal finished leveled on point with Japan, both teams scored the same number of goals, conceded the same number of goals, and had the same goal. Then FIFA thought how do we sort this issue out? We have to eliminate one of them based on their discipline.

Below is FIFA's explanation of the rule:

"Greater number of points obtained regarding fair play conduct (yellow cards = -1, indirect red card (as a result of a second yellow card) = -3, direct red card = -4, yellow card and direct red = -5, with only one of the deductions applied to a player in a single game)."

The rule is the rule though, it is been there for years but players and pundits have not talked about it because it has never been used in the World Cup. Today has opened the eyes of the world to this ridiculous rule.

Football is a contact sport, so eliminating a team based on accumulated cards is weird.

Below are some reactions to Senegal's exit and the fair play rule:

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