France vs Belgium: A 'Final Quality' Match


On Tuesday, he will attempt to guide Belgium to a first World Cup final in the nation's history at the expense of Les Bleus. France will need to show their maturity here.

France took the lead in the 51st minute after Umtiti got in front of Fellaini to nod past Courtois, who five minutes later produced a fine save to deny Olivier Giroud, put through by Mbappe's backheel.

And Lloris said at a pre-match press conference streamed on FIFA's official website: "They are an exhaustive team, they know how to do everything". With Hazard, Romelu Lukaku and Kevin De Bruyne, they lost in the 2014 World Cup quarter-finals and at the same stage at Euro 2016, but under Roberto Martinez in Russian Federation they have already taken an extra step after stunning Brazil in the last eight in Kazan.

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It was a frustrating night for Roberto Martinez's side. Will Belgium be up to the challenge?

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Mbappe, Hazard and Neymar were identified as the most likely targets and after his performance in the World Cup semi-final, the exceptional French youngster seems like the flawless fit for Ronaldo's shoes.

Belgium threatened down the flanks and Eden Hazard put in a risky cross which was turned behind by Umtiti - though the resulting corner was wasted by Nacer Chadli, playing in an unfamiliar right-back role.

Yannick Ferreira-Carrasco and Thorgan Hazard could be alternatives to replace Meunier. Paul Pogba will go against Marouane Fellaini.

Belgium have scored at least two goals in all but one game during this competition.

Belgium had won all five matches in Russian Federation coming into their meeting with the French, and had scored 14 goals in the process.

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Three of the last four meetings between the sides have produced under 2.5 goals in total.

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Belgium midfielder Kevin De Bruyne said Henry might sing France's national anthem before the game, but his loyalties firmly lie with his new side. Both matches happened during the Round of 16. "The game was, as you can imagine, very close, very tight, and it was going to be decided (on) maybe the one that it could find that final touch in the box". But there haven't been one or two secrets to make it work, it's been common sense.

"That was the difference, but if you're going to lose, I'm so proud of the players". We could've come to this stage and froze and not dealt with what France have done in the past.

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And members of the public are pretty thrilled about England's World Cup hopes, with It's Coming Home Memes taking over Twitter. And Mourinho, speaking on RT after the game, remarked how England have a truly unique chance to cement a place in the final.