France beat Belgium to book spot in final

11 July, 2018, 09:54 | Author: Norman Carr
  • 2018 FIFA World Cup Prediction: France vs Belgium

Those sentiments were echoed by goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, who said: 'France have played anti-football.

France will now either play England or Croatia on Sunday, whilst Belgium will have to settle for a place in Saturday's 3rd/4th place play-off.

Saint Petersburg: France reached the World Cup final on Tuesday after a second-half header from Samuel Umtiti gave team a 1-0 win over Belgium.

In contrast, France sleep-walked through the group stages, eking out wins over Australia and Peru before a stultifying 0-0 draw with Denmark. No player in either side has taken more shots on target for either side than this duo (both on five), while Eden Hazard is the only player to take more touches in the opponents' penalty areas. Hindustan Times delivers the news across all social media platforms, on the web, and at your doorstep.

The Belgian star was hacked down by Olivier Giroud on the edge of the area in the 79th minute of France's 1-0 victory on Wednesday morning.

Belgium ultimately didn't do enough in the game to produce its own goal, and France is deservedly in its third final going back to 1998.

Croatia have been forced into extra-time and penalties in their last two matches, and England will be hoping fatigue may play a part to help tip the tie in their favour.

The 19-year-old has also been suggested as a contender for the Ballon d'Or, having become the first teenager since Pele to score a couple of times in a World Cup game.


Manchester United teammates Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku will also be on opposing sides on Tuesday.

"I do not care about the Ballon d'Or, I want the World Cup".

Both sides had plenty of chances, with France taking 19 shots to Belgium's nine, but only Umtiti's 51st-minute header following Antoine Griezmann's corner found the back of the net. In 2006, they were beaten in a penalty shootout by Italy in a World Cup final that was overshadowed by Zidane headbutting opposing player Marco Materazzi in the chest in extra time.

Belgium was attempting to reach their first-ever final after defeating favorite Brazil in the quarterfinals. "For Belgian football I think eventually there will still be an opportunity to do well".

And the presence of French World Cup victor Thierry Henry on the Belgian coaching staff as one of Roberto Martinez's assistants adds extra spice to the occasion.

"We need to understand it's an important game, but I accept it's very hard after a game with the emotions we had today". He scored the most goals, is second in terms of number of caps.

"We know them and they know us", said Deschamps.

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