Published: Tue, July 10, 2018
Sports | By Brooke Harris

A guide to semi-finals

A guide to semi-finals

If only France's young players had an outstanding ex-pro they could turn to for advice about how to beat Belgium in the World Cup semi-finals, someone who won the World Cup himself in 1998 and who scored more goals than anyone in his stellar career with Les Bleus.

Russian Federation is hosting its first-ever FIFA World Cup, with the final set to be played at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium on Sunday.

"At the time, there wasn't the jersey of Belgium, that's why we wore the one of France". Of course, it is a hard situation, it really is not easy for him. He is a huge player, a giant of French football.

"I'd go for France - I think they have enough all round to win it".

"At the time, there wasn't the jersey of Belgium, that's why we wore the one of France".

On a Belgium team packed with so much talent that it's known as the Golden Generation, De Bruyne is one of the standouts along with striker Romelu Lukaku and Eden Hazard.

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The Blues eased into the last four after overcoming South American giants Uruguay 2-0 thanks to two goals from Raphaël Varane and Antoine Griezmann in Nizhny Novgorod on Friday.

But France also have the ghost of previous high-profile failures behind them, specifically the Euro 2016 final that they should in theory have strolled against Portugal only to choke on home turf.

Olivier Giroud has apologised to Chelsea colleague Thibault Courtois for choosing France team-mate Hugo Lloris as the best goalkeeper at the World Cup. Prediction: "France 2-1 Belgium". On each of those occasions the tournament has been hosted in Europe.

Croatia will be physically and emotionally exhausted after back-to-back penalty shootout victories, which hands a clear advantage to England should they make a quick start to the game on Wednesday.

At Belgium's neat, understated training centre 50 minutes outside Moscow there have been plenty of questions about Henry over the last three weeks but not a great deal of interest in answering them.

"He hadn't played a lot of football and to tell the truth I didn't know him".

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His predecessor, Marc Wilmots, recalled putting De Bruyne up against Serbia defender Aleksandar Kolarov in a qualifier for the 2014 World Cup.

Kylian Mbappe has been tipped for big things for a couple of years now and he has certainly lived up to his billing in this World Cup.

They will now aim to stop Lukaku adding to his tally of four goals in the tournament.

Despite Kane's impressive tally, Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic has identified Raheem Sterling as England's danger man in their semi-final.

Croatia´s midfielder Luka Modric celebrates scoring his penalty during the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Russian Federation and Croatia at the Fisht Stadium in Sochi on July 7, 2018.

"He plays an extremely important role for Martinez", Pfaff said.

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Seven weeks ago, players and coaching team started working together at the base camp with the same goal: Their potential as players would be of use only if they could create a collective soul that would be stronger than any individual attempt.

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