World Cup match report Belgium v England 14 July 2018

World Cup match report Belgium v England 14 July 2018

It may not be how either team had envisioned it, but Belgium and England are playing in the final weekend of the World Cup.

Two exhausted and disappointed teams playing in heat with the crowd dominated by neutral Russian fans was never going to be a recipe for a thriller but Belgium made a flying start. Kane leads his Belgian rival by six goals to four although Lukaku has an assist to his name which could prove crucial if they finish level on goals (finalists France have Kylian Mbappe and Antoine Griezmann on three goals each). Did that skew their karma?

Hazard would eventually seal England's fate with 10 minutes left in the match after slotting home for 2-0. The Red Devils won't leave empty handed.

Despite not reaching the goal, the Red Devils and Three Lions still have a lot to battle for as the distinction of third place is given to the victor of this match.

Gareth Southgate´s men were forced to settle for England´s joint best performance at a World Cup overseas, matching that of the 1990 generation. His dribbling, direct runs from midfield and brilliant passing will be a challenge for England's defence - if Romelu Lukaku performs in the complete opposite manner than he did against France.

With their participation completed, both teams figure to be favorites at Euro 2020 alongside France, who play in the World Cup final on Sunday against Croatia.

"We showed today that we really wanted to go for that third place".

When the teams emerged after the restart, England - with the introduction of Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford for Danny Rose and Raheem Sterling - gradually got a foothold on the game.

Predictions for the World Cup semifinals
There have been 60 matches, 157 goals and four penalty shootouts - but just four teams remain in the 2018 World Cup . I'm so pleased for him as he's a great person and character. "Hopefully we will go a step further than in 1998".

Brendan McDonnell: 1 - 2. Does Belgium? Does England? I couldn't be more proud.

Furthermore, Belgium and England have become the first nations to lock horns twice at a World Cup finals since Brazil clashed with Turkey twice during the 2002 World Cup. So who will actually feel a sense of accomplishment?

Hazard has a much better final ball, and he scores more goals at the worldwide level, having hit three, including Belgium's second in this game, and provided two assists in Russian Federation.

George Perry could care less about the score.

Like Martinez, Gareth Southgate could also ring in a few changes while retaining a number of his core players at the same time. And that's the full 90, not some stage-managed sub in the 24′.

Trippier could be a doubt for England after he limped off in the latter stages of the semi-final with a cramp induced nerve problem.

And his heavy first touch will likely mean Kane emerges as one of the most underwhelming Golden Boot winners in recent years. Belgium won't care but won't rotate. England wins from a set piece. It didn't even finish third. Which Chelsea players will have a role in this game?

And that perhaps wasn't the best approach to take as Belgium looked set to go for the kill from the get-go.