Brent Sancho headed a ball past his own goalkeeper in the 25th minute and Trinidad and Tobago never recovered, losing, 2-0, to Paraguay yesterday at Kaiserslautern, Germany, in a game it needed to win to have any chance at advancing to the second round.
Trinidad came into its final first-round match with slim hopes of advancing, needing a win against already eliminated Paraguay, an England win over Sweden, and help on goal differential.
None of the three happened since Sweden tied England, 2-2, to earn second place in Group B behind the English. After starting its first World Cup appearance with a promising and surprising 0-0 draw against the Swedes, Trinidad and Tobago finished last in the group with only 1 point.
``They can be proud," Trinidad coach Leo Beenhakker said. ``Before the start of the tournament the question was if we would lose 6-nil, 8-nil, or 5-nil."
The biggest problem was the Soca Warriors' inability to score. In fact, the only time a Trinidad player put the ball into the net in three matches it went into the wrong goal.
Nelson Cuevas broke free on a counterattack in the 86th minute to score Paraguay's second goal.
``Paraguay deserved their win because they took advantage of their chances," Beenhakker said.
Trinidad did its best to generate offense, playing the final 59 minutes with three strikers and giving creative midfielder Russell Latapy a chance to play.
Latapy created a spark, setting up Dwight Yorke with a good chance outside the penalty box and narrowly missing his shot from nearly the same spot. But Trinidad had only one shot on goal until Latapy's long attempt was easily saved by Aldo Bobadilla in the 79th minute.
``We got some good opportunities but scoring is one of the difficulties we have with this team," Beenhakker said.
Poland 2, Costa Rica 1-- Bartosz Bosacki scored twice to lead Poland at Hanover, Germany, in a Group A game between teams already eliminated.
The winner against Costa Rica came in the 66th minute, when Bosacki rose above Paulo Wanchope to powerfully head Jacek Krzynowek's corner kick into the goal.
Poland coach Pawel Janas was proud of his team's effort, even if it ``came too late."
``The team really fought hard today and left a lot on the field," he said.
Costa Rica took a 1-0 lead in the 25th minute when Ronald Gomez's low, left-footed free kick from 19 yards out got past the defensive wall and goalkeeper Artur Boruc.
Bosacki tied the score in the 33d minute off a corner kick by Maciej Zurawski. Costa Rica goalkeeper Jose Porras ran out in an attempt to punch the corner kick away, but he stumbled and the ball fell to Bosacki, who knocked it in the net.