Match Preview – France vs Belgium

France will play against Belgium at the Semi Finals of the 2018 FIFA World Cup at the Saint Petersburg Stadium today in St. Petersburg.

France knocked out Uruguay after beating them by 2-0 with goals from Antoinne Griezmann and Raphael Varane, Belgium also knocked out Brazil by beating them 2-1, with goals from Kevin De Bruyne and an own goal from Fernandinho in the quarter fianls.

Having both secured their seats at the 2018 FIFA World Cup table until next weekend’s fight for medals, France and Belgium now have to see who will be pursuing gold and who is left searching for bronze. A potentially career-crowning Final is as little as an hour and a half of football away.

The Red Devils will be without a key – if not the most important player of their puzzle against France, with Thomas Meunier picking up a second booking prior to them being wiped for the semi-finals. Les Bleus will however be buoyed by the return of Blaise Matuidi, after sitting out a suspension of his own.

Thierry Henry will be the center discussion as he will play against his own country. A country he helped them to World Cup triumph in 1998 at France.

France haven’t met any side more often than Belgium, having played them on 74 occasions. However, they have only met twice at the World Cup, with their last meeting coming in the third-place match at Mexico 1986, and have played each other in just eight friendlies since.

Possible line-ups

France: Hugo Lloris; Lucas Hernandez, Samuel Umtiti, Raphael Varane, Benjamin Pavard; Ngolo Kante, Paul Pogba; Blaise Matuidi, Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe; Olivier Giroud.

Belgium: Thibaut Courtois; Jan Vertonghen, Vincent Kompany, Thomas Vermaelen, Toby Alderweireld; Yannick Carrasco, Axel Witsel, Kevin De Bruyne, Nacer Chadli; Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku​.

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