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England fans make late dash to Russian Federation for World Cup semi-final

11 July 2018

For me, Dejan Lovren and Domagoj Vida have been fantastic centre backs, among the best in the World Cup. The Three Lions opened up as 7/5 favourites to beat Croatia in normal time but those odds have shrunk to 11/8 after a patriotic plunge by punters. They have also shown versatility in defence, with their three-man backline anchored by the impressive John Stones, in front of their fearless, agile goalkeeper, Jordan Pickford.

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

The FIFA World Cup has now entered the penultimate stage of the competition and four teams will battle it out for ultimate glory that awaits the winners in the end.

France coach Didier Deschamps hailed the character of his young team after they beat Belgium 1-0 on Tuesday to set up a World Cup final against either England or Croatia in Moscow.

France withstood nine shots from Belgium as Hugo Lloris kept a clean sheet, and Deschamps credited his side's effort at the back.

After once again starring as Real won a fourth Champions League crown in five seasons by beating Liverpool in Kiev in May, Modric will be nearly assured of winning the Ballon d'Or if he can lead Croatia all the way to improbable World Cup glory.

How they got there Croatia after winning Group D with a 100 per cent record have had to grit their way through the knockout stages with penalty shoot-out wins over Denmark and hosts Russian Federation.

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"I've got a amusing feeling that the momentum is so good, and, you know, especially now that we're all going to turn up with special Gareth waistcoats, and that can only help can't it", said fan Lee Walkup, 50.

Yet it is England's creative, dynamic and intelligent midfield that will need to be on the top of its game against Croatia.

This will subsequently leave Belgium to defeat England in the final meaning football will not be "coming home" this summer, (according to the model)!

"We've been always returning to the 1998 team, putting a new burden on Modric and his team".

Just one player. That's Belgium's Thomas Meunier who was cautioned in the quarter-final against Brazil. England to win and Under 2.5 goals is a 3/1 chance and might be the way to bet.

And with four goals each, Denis Cheryshev tied as the third-top scorer with Belgian striker Romelu Lukaku.

England fans make late dash to Russian Federation for World Cup semi-final