The World Cup will resume for the last eight following a few day’s break and here are the things to expect during those fixtures.
Mbappe to outshine old guard?
Kylian Mbappe announced his arrival on the elite stage of football two years ago with Monaco and he is intent on doing the same for France in this World Cup. His campaign begun on a proper note last Sunday when he won a penalty in addition to scoring twice in Les Blues’ thrilling 4-3 victory over Argentina. He will be playing against some of the best strikers today as he faces his club teammate at PSG Edinson Cavani and Barcelona’s Luis Suarez. However, we expect the youngster to steal the headlines from his more experienced competitors. This will not be an easy feat for him but he is already used to performing under pressure and we should expect no different here.
Individual brilliance to count
The match between Brazil and Belgium will bring together a long list of individual players with immense ability when it comes to the game. Belgium’s current team have been referred to as the golden generation and so far they have lived up to that billing. Brazil are a traditional powerhouse with quality in all departments. This is a fixture that will go down to the individual quality of the players involved. Brazil are solid defensively and they have a lethal attacking unit in Neymar, Philippe Coutinho, Willian and Gabriel Jesus. For all of Belgium’s defensive frailties, they make up for that in their attack with Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku and Kevin De Bryne at their disposal. So far they have managed a total of 12 goals and this should be an entertaining fixture in prospect.
Great hopes for England
Gareth Southgate and his England squad have done well so far and they will be facing a side they have had difficulties beating in the past in Sweden. Recent outings between them have not been as bad with two wins for England and one for Sweden. The Three Lions have been playing some impressive attacking football and on occasion, they have scored for fun as was the case against Panama. There is a lot of hope and positivity from this camp and they have the quality to make it at least past the quarter-finals. Whether they can do that will remain to be seen.
Home support to count for less for Russia
Russia have exceeded expectations to be at this stage of the World Cup and this has been due to their hard work and without a doubt their home support. They will be coming up against a big opponent in Croatia and at this stage home support will count for little. Croatia have a superior squad and they should have enough in them to at least move to the last semi-final.
The race for the Golden Boot to take shape
The race for the Golden boot is set to get stiffer in the World Cup with Harry Kane leading the charts so far. Kane took his tally to six goals with his penalty against Colombia and he is two goals better than Lukaku. They are then followed by a pack that has the likes of Mbappe, Cavani, Denis Cheryshev and Artem Dyuba, all having scored three up to this point. All of them are in the quarter-finals and they will be hoping to improve on the number of goals scored so far.