Croatia Break English Hearts, Set Up Final Date With France

Croatia Break English Hearts

Mario Mandzukic scored the winning goal deep in extra time as Croatia beat England 2-1 in an utterly gripping World Cup semi-final in Moscow on Wednesday to set up a final date with France. The Juventus forward netted in the 109th minute to complete a remarkable comeback from a shattered Croatian team and take the small nation of little more than four million people into the World Cup final for the first time in their short history. Kieran Trippier’s magnificent early free-kick had seemingly set England on course to reach…

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Hazard’s Belgium Block France Path as Neighbours Clash Semi-final

Hazard's Belgium Block France Path as Neighbours Clash Semi-final

Eden Hazard and a brilliant Belgian generation stand between France and a place in the World Cup final as the countries bring their historic rivalry to Tuesday’s first semi-final in Saint Petersburg. Not since 1986 have Belgium made it this far at the World Cup, losing to a Diego Maradona-inspired Argentina in Mexico and then going down 4-2 to France in the third-place play-off, the last competitive meeting of the nations. In the years since, France have won one World Cup and one European Championship, and lost the 2006 World…

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England vs Sweden | Tricky quarterfinal awaits England

England vs Sweden

The euphoria and expectations of the English — starved for sporting success at the international level — have reached a crescendo, with the fans winning the social media battle with their hilarious rendition of “It’s coming home”. The memes and spoofs are keeping the strong media contingent entertained as most run against deadlines to keep their bosses back home happy. The English, however, will have to navigate a tricky quarterfinal against Sweden, which has adopted a very English game to ensure its best showing in the World Cup since the…

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Russia goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev sends Spain home.

Four years after his blunder against South Korea cost Russia a potential place in the knockout rounds, Igor Akinfeev stood like a wall thwarting waves of Spain attack and helped the home team enter the World Cup quarter-finals at the expense of the 2010 champions. (FIFA World Cup 2018 Round of 16 highlights: Russia vs Spain) With the scoreline 1-1 after regulation time and extra time at the Luzhiniki Stadium —- Spain led through a Sergei Ignashevich own goal and Russia equalised from Artem Dzyuba’s penalty —- Akinfeev saved spot kicks from…

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Messi Fan, Who Went Missing After Leaving Suicide Note, Found Dead in Kerala River

Messi Fan, Who Went Missing After Leaving Suicide Note, Found Dead in Kerala River

Kottayam: The body of a 30-year-old Lionel Messi fan, who went missing since his team lost to Croatia in the World Cup on Thursday, was found from a river on Sunday morning. The body of Dinu Alex, who hailed from Arumanoor — a hamlet on the banks of River Meenachil near Kottayam — was found in the same river at Illikkal. Alex had been missing ever since the Latin American team lost a group stage match to Croatia in the FIFA World Cup on Friday morning. He left behind a…

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FIFA World Cup 2018: Toni Kroos’ Late Heroics Against Sweden Save Germany From Humiliation

Toni Kroos' Late Heroics Against Sweden Save Germany From Humiliation

Toni Kroos rescued holders Germany from the brink of an unthinkable early World Cup exit here Saturday, curling home a sensational winner in the fifth minute of stoppage time to seal a 2-1 win over Sweden. The 10-man reigning champions were in deep trouble when Kroos stepped up to steer in his dramatic winner in the final minute of time added on at Sochi’s Fisht Stadium. Before that, a Kroos error had led to Ola Toivonen giving Sweden a 32nd-minute lead and even a Marco Reus equaliser early in the…

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FIFA World Cup 2018: Russia Spoil Salah’s Party to Close in on Last 16

Saint Petersburg: The return of Mohamed Salah from injury couldn’t prevent World Cup hosts Russia virtually sealing their place in the last 16 by beating Egypt 3-1 on Tuesday. An own goal by Egypt captain Ahmed Fathy opened the floodgates on a sodden night in Saint Petersburg before goals from Denis Cheryshev and Artem Dzyuba furthered Russian hopes they can defy pre-tournament expectations with a deep run into the latter stages. Salah did net Egypt’s first goal at a World Cup since 1990 from the penalty spot after he had…

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FIFA World Cup 2018: Don’t think this is Lionel Messi’s last tournament – Jorge Sampaoli

A few years ago, it would have been a giant mismatch. The Lionel Messi-led two-time champions Argentina have produced some of the World Cup’s greatest moments over the decades, while Iceland have nothing to show for in terms of history in this tournament. However, when the teams face off in their campaign-opener at the Spartak Stadium here on Saturday, Iceland are expected to offer more than just a fight to their famous opponents. For Argentina, four years after losing the World Cup final to Germany, the 2018 edition represents a…

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FIFA World Cup 2018: Cristiano Ronaldo delighted with hat-trick, says draw a fair result

Cristiano Ronaldo delighted with hat-trick

Cristiano Ronaldo expressed his delight at setting another record in his remarkable career as his hat-trick against Spain on Friday allowed him to become just the fourth player to score in four World Cups. “I am very happy, it’s a nice personal record to have, one more in my career,” said the Portugal captain, whose goals secured a 3-3 draw for the European champions in a remarkable World Cup Group B clash with neighbours Spain in Sochi. Ronaldo had twice put Portugal in front, and yet he was required to…

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