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Semi Final 1: France Vs Belgium (for the right to face and lose to England in the World Cup Final)

Who will face England in the world cup final?  

49 members have voted

  1. 1. Who's going through to the final?

    • France
      28
    • Belgium
      22


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So after three whole days with no football the semis start tonight with France Vs Belgium.

Kick off is on BBC1 @19:00 with the winners advancing to the World Cup Final this Sunday where they will get the pleasure of being England's opponents and seeing first hand, football coming home!

The losers don't go home as they will have to stay on to face Croatia in Saturday's third place playoff.

Who do you want to win?

I'd prefer England to play Belgium and avenge our sole defeat although I don't mind beating the French either, should be a cracker tonight.

Edited by Hodgy

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France have been my tip to win the whole competition since the start. But Belgium did look really good in beating Brazil so who knows, thats the sort of win that gives a side real belief.

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3 minutes ago, Coulthard's Jaw said:

France have been my tip to win the whole competition since the start. But Belgium did look really good in beating Brazil so who knows, thats the sort of win that gives a side real belief.

I think Hazard and De Bruyne could be the difference makers tonight, both squads look fantastic but neither performed exceptionally.

Belgium seem more fluid and better going forward than the French but defensively more vulnerable, I think it'll be a blinder tonight possibly the game of the tournament with what's on the line, really looking forward to this one.

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17 minutes ago, artest said:

This is the actual final.

No, that's Sunday at 4pm.

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That picture has decided who I want to win. I'd forgotten how much I hate Tintin.

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I reckon whoever wins tonight will win on Sunday as well.

3-1 to France is my prediction. Belgium have a more fearsome attacking line in my eyes, but they could be left badly exposed at the back, so I reckon Les Bleus will turn on the style late on to reach the Final.

From an English perspective, though, I would actually rather play France than Belgium if we can get past Croatia.

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2 minutes ago, CFuller said:

From an English perspective, though, I would actually rather play France than Belgium if we can get past Croatia.

Or a Belgium win and a England loss so England could meet France in the third-place game?

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Just now, Blue Lou said:

Or a Belgium win and a England loss so England could meet France in the third-place game?

If England end up in the 3rd-place play-off, I don't really mind who we're playing against, to be honest.

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After the group stages, I really liked the looks of Belgium, Croatia and Uruguay, more so than the usually fancied sides such as Germany, Spain or France. Croatia have been poor since the groups and been very fortunate to get this far whilst France have done the opposite and played pretty well after struggling a little in the group stage. Belgium have looked consistently good though so I'd like to see them get to the final as they were the team I felt played best in the groups, too.

Should be a great match tonight.

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1 minute ago, sebsy said:

After the group stages, I really liked the looks of Belgium, Croatia and Uruguay, more so than the usually fancied sides such as Germany, Spain or France. Croatia have been poor since the groups and been very fortunate to get this far whilst France have done the opposite and played pretty well after struggling a little in the group stage. Belgium have looked consistently good though so I'd like to see them get to the final as they were the team I felt played best in the groups, too.

Should be a great match tonight.

In what way has Croatia been fortunate? If anything I feel they have been unlucky to be honest.

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They made a meal out of Denmark and then the same thing against Russia. Didn't perform like they did in the group stages.

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41 minutes ago, artest said:

This is the actual final.

That was the real quiz.

France for me tonight, will be close though! Hazard could be a game changer and cause a slight upset.

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5 minutes ago, Cedrik said:

In what way has Croatia been fortunate? If anything I feel they have been unlucky to be honest.

Unlucky and got to the semis?  Eh?

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3 minutes ago, sebsy said:

They made a meal out of Denmark and then the same thing against Russia. Didn't perform like they did in the group stages.

Ah yes, their football hasn't been great. That is definitely true but that was the same thing concerning their opponents so it's not they have beaten teams that showed much better things than they did. 

1 minute ago, Crispypaul said:

Unlucky and got to the semis?  Eh?

Yes, I feel in both matches (against Denmark and Russia) Croatia had the better of the chances whereas Denmark and Russia scored from the two, three, they got (if you can call that wonder strike from Cheryshev even a chance). They could have sealed both matches easily before extra time or penalties. 

In the match against Denmark, Rebić would have certainly scored the winner if he wasn't brought down (still not sure how that wasn't a red car) and against Russia they got a very late goal against whilst also having to pull through with several players seemingly injured. 

In both penalty shoot-outs they did a decent job, especially with Subasic saving four in total. 

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59 minutes ago, CFuller said:

From an English perspective, though, I would actually rather play France than Belgium if we can get past Croatia.

nah Belgium are basically a PL side, would rather play what we know than the likes of Mbappe even though I don't think France have been particularly good so far 

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I think it will be tight but I struggle to look beyond France for this one, they have so much quality and are in much less danger of becoming overawed than Belgium are.

If Belgium were to win, I will for the first time genuinely believe, rather than hope, that England are going to win this World Cup. France would present a much more difficult prospect in a potential final imo.

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24 minutes ago, Barry Cartman said:

nah Belgium are basically a PL side, would rather play what we know than the likes of Mbappe even though I don't think France have been particularly good so far 

This indeed. I think it is highly beneficial for England to meet Belgium and not France. I would be amazed if England would beat France whereas I feel they have a huge chance against Belgium whilst still being considered the underdog. 

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Who to root against, hmm.

Will it be dud Martinez getting into WC final or bunch of overrated Frenchies? :cool:

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24 minutes ago, Wigmore said:

I think it will be tight but I struggle to look beyond France for this one, they have so much quality and are in much less danger of becoming overawed than Belgium are.

If Belgium were to win, I will for the first time genuinely believe, rather than hope, that England are going to win this World Cup. France would present a much more difficult prospect in a potential final imo.

Completely agree with this. I know it's coming home and all that, but if France win today they win the WC imo.

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1 hour ago, Cedrik said:

In what way has Croatia been fortunate? If anything I feel they have been unlucky to be honest.

 

1 hour ago, Cedrik said:

Ah yes, their football hasn't been great. That is definitely true but that was the same thing concerning their opponents so it's not they have beaten teams that showed much better things than they did. 

Yes, I feel in both matches (against Denmark and Russia) Croatia had the better of the chances whereas Denmark and Russia scored from the two, three, they got (if you can call that wonder strike from Cheryshev even a chance). They could have sealed both matches easily before extra time or penalties. 

In the match against Denmark, Rebić would have certainly scored the winner if he wasn't brought down (still not sure how that wasn't a red car) and against Russia they got a very late goal against whilst also having to pull through with several players seemingly injured. 

In both penalty shoot-outs they did a decent job, especially with Subasic saving four in total. 

So you feel Croatia have been unlucky even though you say they haven't been great and that they could have easily won both matches before extra time and penalties? If they could've done it easily they would have done but the truth is they never looked like they really could and the games were close, also mentioning Russia got a late goal as if it was real misfortune on Croatia's part, it wasn't.

I agree with Sebsy that Croatia have been poor in the KO rounds, they were fancied big time against Denmark and Russia and never looked like they had the beating of either, even Modric hasn't looked particularly good in fact he has looked leggy at times.

I'd love a similar Croatian performance from what they've shown in the KO rounds Vs England, it'd be tougher than we faced Vs Sweden but not as tough as Colombia.

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Spoiler
4 minutes ago, Hodgy said:

So you feel Croatia have been unlucky even though you say they haven't been great and that they could have easily won both matches before extra time and penalties? If they could've done it easily they would have done but the truth is they never looked like they really could and the games were close, also mentioning Russia got a late goal as if it was real misfortune on Croatia's part, it wasn't.

I agree with Sebsy that Croatia have been poor in the KO rounds, they were fancied big time against Denmark and Russia and never looked like they had the beating of either, even Modric hasn't looked particularly good in fact he has looked leggy at times. 

I'd love a similar Croatian performance from what they've shown in the KO rounds Vs England, it'd be tougher than we faced Vs Sweden but not as tough as Colombia.

You're completely missing the point with this Croatian team.

As I've wrote already. Croatia has always played on the level of their opponent. Better the opponent, better Croatia plays.
And Croatia has always had huge issues with teams that park the bus or play a very rigid, direct style of play. And that's exactly what both Denmark and Russia did.

Even though team on paper would suggest otherwise, Croatia is much better against teams that want to create and dominate.

England didn't impress, either, if we go by your logic.
Outside of amazing set-pieces, your offensive execution has been pretty bad, even though the ideas and gameplan is clear.

If I was a neutral, I wouldn't trust either of these teams, anything could happen.
We haven't seen how England reacts if they concede first.

There's so many players who are potential liabilities in both teams. But I just realized this is a France-Belgium topic. :D

Offtopic about the other game. <.<

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France have more options to play differently, and have a bit more depth, should rightly be slight favourites, but if Belgium can get their starting XI firing I think they'll win.

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3 minutes ago, Barry Cartman said:

I can't see anything other than the same team and formation as they did against Brazil 

I mean in the sense of subs to switch the game up,

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Meunier is suspended for tonight.

I can't see them playing both Chadli and Carrasco on wingbacks.

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They didn't even play with wingbacks last time. Kind of interested to see what he does. Just sticking Lukaku further to the right again probably won't work.

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I think Belgium will revert back to the wing-back formation, Chadli on the right and Carrasco on the left. Martinez would've not changed formations if it weren't for Meunier's suspension. Mertens to come back in on the right for Fellaini and Lukaku back in the middle. But there's also the chance of Fellaini keeping his place by playing with Witsel pivoting De Bruyne as a #10 behind Hazard and Lukaku.

This game has the chance of becoming a classic match. Can't wait personally.

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Yeah Fellaini and Chadli will definitely remain in the team, they were immense.

Carrasco or Vermaelen in and I think Carrasco has the biggest chance. Though personally I'd rather he put on Dembélé as a sort of wing back, he's not used to the position but he can defend, run his ass off and keep the ball.

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I want a Belgium vs Croatia final, so we can have someone winning the title for the first time, so c'mon Belgium!

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8 minutes ago, scott MUFC said:

Fellaini V lingard final.. for all the united haters

KDB Vs. Kane the real highlight though. 

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I actually voted France before the tournament started (a month prior) but I've been saying Belgium since the first day of the tournament and having seen all of France's games they haven't impressed me as much as their talent pool should (same old France). 

I'm still backing Belgium but as many others have pointed out, this could really go either way. 

I'm working so won't see the game - gonna record it and watch it while trying to avoid any results :)

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Too close to call. Head says France, heart says maybe Belgium.

I don't care who wins as long as it's entertaining, goes to Extra time and Penalties, and is riddled with red cards and week-long injuries.

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