Two of the big favorites to win the Under-20 World Cup will meet in the final, but like France, Uruguay faced some serious opposition from a big underdog to get there. Iraq looked like the better team for large chunks of their semifinal and took the lead on a brilliant goal, but conceded a late equalizer, then fell 7-6 on penalty kicks after a 1-1 draw.
Ali Adnan, an experienced senior international for Iraq, netted the opening goal with an absolutely stunning free kick, scoring his second goal of the tournament. It appeared that he would attempt to play an in-swinging cross on a free kick from the right flank, 30 yards from goal, but instead he opted to rip a bending shot towards the top corner at the near post. Uruguay keeper Guillermo De Amores actually saw and reacted to the shot well, but it was so well placed and it with so much power that he had no chance to make a save.
Uruguay had a number of good chances throughout the match, but struggled to make the most of them. Iraq goalkeeper Mohammed Hameed was erratic, but ultimately very effective and made a number of big saves and clearances. However, he wasn't able to keep a clean sheet. In the 87th minute, Felipe Avenatti won a header in a crowd and nodded down to Gonzalo Bueno, who finished from 12 yards to level the match and force extra time.
The extra time period was uneventful until the very end, when Hameed was forced into action. Uruguay also hit the crossbar on one occasion, but was unable to avoid a shootout.
Gianni Rodriguez stepped up first and had his shot saved, but Ali Fayez missed his penalty, keeping the shootout level at 0-0. Both teams made their next six consecutive penalties until Salif Salman blasted the decisive shot over the bar, sending Uruguay through to the final.