After the 0-0 tie between Greece and Japan, Colombia has all but guaranteed themselves the first place spot in Group C. They currently sit atop of the table with 6 points and a goal differential of +4, while the Ivory Coast sit in the second with 3 points and a goal differential of exactly 0. In the final round of Group C play, Colombia will face off against Japan while the Ivory Coast and Greece will be set to do battle in search for second place and a trip to the knockout stages. So what does this mean for Colombia when they face Japan?

There are a couple of options. One, they could sit a contingent of starting players in order to rest up for the Round of 16. The only problem with this is if the Ivory Coast win and somehow end with a better goal differential than the Colombians, “Los Cafeteros” will then sit in second place. The second option is that they continue to play their regular lineup in order to absolutely make sure that they secure the first place seed. Both are viable options, but I don’t believe that the Ivorians can make up a four-goal difference over the span of one game. My guess is that their next game will feature a number of regular starters with some substitutes mixed in as well. So let’s assume that the Colombians end up in first place after all three group matches have been played.

The winner of Group C will then play the runner-up in Group D. This most likely will either be Italy or Uruguay, both of whom are world-class and will surely offer a tough matchup. But seeing as how the Colombians have played thus far, I would not label them as underdogs against either of those teams. They have been absolutely fantastic thus far and young gun James Rodriguez has got the world’s attention. Colombia has got nothing to fear, and if I were either of those two Group D teams, it is the challenge of facing Colombia that I would extremely worried about.