France took on Belgium in the first semi-final of the FIFA World Cup 2018 in Russia on Tuesday. The final score of France vs Belgium was 1-0.
The battle to get into the final of the tournament was anticipated to be a feisty affair, at this stage, only those teams come who have been at their best.
France had a relatively easier road to the last four as compared to Belgium, but facts go out of the window in a knockout game.
Belgium started the game as the more aggressive team. They seemed to be in the confidence they must have attained after defeating Brazil in the previous game. They tested the French defence with constant pressure and wing-play.
1998 Champions France weren’t going to sit and take this assault, as they themselves started charging down the field. Both teams were on it in the middle of the first half and saw their chances go wide. As the first half was about to finish, Belgium and France had to rely on their goalkeeper to make stellar saves to keep either team in the game.
In the second-half, France knew they would have to play fire with fire, or else they will get outworked by this Belgium side.
They upped the ante and earned a corner in the 51st minute. It would be an ideal opportunity to take the lead and shut out this game.
Thankfully for them, Samuel Umitit rose the highest and scored his first goal in the tournament to take the lead for France. Les Bleus led the game they were getting somewhat outplayed in, and they had to rely on luck.
The Red Devils had been in this position previously when they conceded two quickfire goals against Japan in the second-half. Even though they went onto score three against the Asian side, this was an even taller order.
Regardless, Eden Hazard didn’t let his team get bogged down and kept on charging. Axel Witsel saw his shot saved, Marouane Fellaini headed wide. It appeared that maybe fate didn’t want Belgium to win this game for some reason. The time ticked on and the pressure of next goal kept on increasing.
However, none of their efforts were enough. Belgium faced their first defeat of the tournament and also a heartbreak. They came as close as they could’ve but failed to enter the finals.
Meanwhile, France booked their spot in the final for the third time in the tournament history. They will face the winner of England vs Croatia for the FIFA World Cup 2018 title.