The 2018 World Cup semifinals are set, there are just four teams remaining. France, Belgium, England and Croatia are left standing after what is one of the best and most open World Cup tournaments in a long time. France will take on Belgium this Tuesday and England faces Croatia on Wednesday. How did these teams get to the semifinals? Some of the best moments from the quarterfinals tell the story.
1. The Golden Generation
Belgium beat Brazil 2-1, solidifying their spot in the semifinals. An own goal by Brazil’s Fernandinho and an absolute rocket by Kevin De Bruyne were the difference.
The counter attack was brilliant, but let's take another look at that STUNNER by Kevin De Bruyne pic.twitter.com/ZUbd611bXe— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) July 6, 2018
After facing 26 shots and a late goal by Brazil, Belgium held on for their lives. Luckily for them, it was enough in the end to get the result and move on. If it weren’t for a Thibaut Courtois save in the end, who knows what could have happened. The golden generation are here to win Belgium their first World Cup. The likes of Romelu Lukaku, Eden Hazard and De Bruyne are on a mission. What’s next for Belgium? A date with France this coming Tuesday.
2. Muslera’s Howler
With the game 1-0 at the time, France had somewhat of a control on the game, but it was up in the air. Paul Pogba picks up the ball, plays Clorentin Tolisso who then quickly plays Antione Griezmann, who takes a quick shot. What looks to be an easy save hits off of Uruguay keeper Fernando Muslera’s hands and goes in. It was a shot that needed to be saved and for Muslera, it was a moment that will haunt him for the rest of his life.
Even without that shot going in, it’s hard to say Uruguay could have won, but regardless that shot should have been saved. However, Uruguay struggled without target man Edison Cavani up top. France went through and will play Belgium this Tuesday.
3. It’s coming home
England have made the semifinals of the World Cup after defeating Sweden 2-0. It was a convincing win for England with goals by center back Harry Maguire and Dele Alli. They looked sharp in defense and executed their game plan perfectly. Goalkeeper Jordan Pickford was excellent in the win as well.
For England, the story continues and the dreams of reaching another World Cup Final are right in front of them.
4. Another shootout victory
Croatia advanced to the semifinals after a hard fought win versus the hosts. After Russia tied the game late and after injuries and adversity, Croatia were the ones with the calm heads in the penalty shootout, winning it 4-3. It was a game full of emotion, stress and for a casual fan, one that makes watching soccer so special.
HE DOES IT AGAIN!— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) July 7, 2018
For the second game in a row, Rakitic wins the penalty shootout for Croatia. pic.twitter.com/H3aH1Em3DP
After two back-to-back 120-minute games, Croatia really need to rest up before taking on England. They picked up a few injuries and looked very tired afterwards. They have just a few days to recover, but will surely be ready to go Wednesday.
What were some of your special moments?