FIFA World Cup 2018: Semifinals!


It is time for semifinals in the 2018 FIFA World Cup. In this post we take a look on the results of the quarterfinals, and predict the outcomes of the semifinals.

Tuesday July 10: France vs Belgium

The French team, “Les Bleus”,  has been a bit of an outsider in the talk before the World Cup, but now they have reached the semifinal after winning their group, and then eliminating Lionel Messi’s Argentina in the Round of 16, followed up by a 2-0 win in the quarterfinal against Uruguay. France has a very talented squad, one example being 19 year old Kylian Mbappé Lottin, who scored two goals in the round of 16. They can very well go all the way in this tournament, but to do so, they need to find a way to stop Belgium. Belgium won their group before England, and managed to turn 0-2 into a 3-2 win on stop time against Japan in the round of 16. In the quarterfinal, they outmaneuvered one of the beforehand favorites, Brazil, with superstar Neymar Jr, 2-1.

This semifinal is difficult, if not impossible to predict. Both teams have shown efficiency in their offense, however, some gaps persists in their defenses (France gave up three goals in the round of 16, Belgium two). Whatever team manages to combine their offense with a disciplined defensive game will win this game and advance to the 2018 FIFA World Cup final.

Wednesday July 11: Croatia – England

Croatia played a convincing game in the group stage, turning predictions to their favor, especially since they are in the half of the playoff tree that is considered to be “weaker”. However, they have struggled so far, winning two tight games (round of 16: Denmark, quarterfinal: Russia) after penalties. We do not think that is enough against England, who are getting better and better as the tournament progresses. England managed to get rid of their “penalty ghost” after winning a dirty game against Colombia in the round of 16. The shootout win made the “Lions” come out as a whole new team against Sweden in the quarterfinals, efficiently and relentlessly mowing down the blue and yellow defenses. The final scored was written 2-0.

The losing teams will face each other in the bronze game July 14, and the final is played Sunday July 15.

FIFA World Cup 2018: Round of 16

Ryssland 2018

It is time for the Round of 16 in the FIFA World Cup 2018 and Sweden is one of 16 teams that have advanced to the playoffs. Through a win against South Korea (1-0) in the opening match, a tough loss in the final in the final seconds against now eliminated Germany (1-2) and a solid win against Mexico in the last match (3-0) Sweden won its group and is now facing Switzerland in the Round of 16. If Janne Andersson’s men advances to the quarterfinal they will face the winner between Colombia and England. In this post you will find all matches with dates and comments. At the bottom of the post is the playoff tree.

Saturday, June 30th:

France – Argentina

Comment: Two teams with much left to prove. Argentina and Messi chase their first gold after several losses in Copa de America and the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Uruguay – Portugal

Comment: Uruguay that has not been tested so far in the tournament meets Cristiano Ronaldo who can decide big matches on his own.

Sunday, July 1:

Spain – Russia

Comment: Russia proceeded through a simple group where they lost clearly against the single opponent of rank (Uruguay). Spain is not as good as previous years, but they should win this meeting.

Croatia – Denmark

Comment: It is always fun to follow our red-white Scandinavian neighbors in the World Cup. However, Croatia played solid in the group stage and could be too tough for the Danes.

Monday, July 2:

Brazil – Mexico

Comment: Mexico advanced to the playoffs due to the fact that South Korea beat Germany (!) 2-0 in the final group stage round. Brazil should win this.

Belgium – Japan

Comment: Japan is the only Asian team in the playoffs. They face Belgium who should win this match.

Tuesday, July 3:

Sweden – Switzerland

Comment: Switzerland has not lost a match for a long time and are slightly favorites against a disciplined Swedish team who got their scoring going in the last game of the group stage. This can go either way. We hope for a warm Swedish World Cup summer!

Colombia – England

Comment: England yawned themselves through the group stage. Chances are, they efforts are not enough against more qualified opponents.