Frustrated Belgium fans rue what might have been

11 July, 2018, 11:47 | Author: Marlene Myers
  • Olivier Giroud of France in action during of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia quarter final match between Uruguay and France

Harry Maguire and Dele Alli headed past the Swedes en route to a 2-0 victory, guiding England to their first semifinal appearance since 1990, and just their third ever.

While Asterix is a Frenchman, Tintin - the daring journalist - has Belgium as his home.

Samuel Umtiti headed in from a corner for the only goal of the game to knock Belgium out, and Martinez said that while he was pleased his team negated France's threat on the counter-attack, his players did not show their usual finesse in front of goal.

Tintin and Asterix have always been rivals in the world of the comic strips for both are popular for their entertainment and art.

The Barcelona defender joined a special club - four of France's last six goals in World Cup semi-finals have come from defenders - Marius Tresor (v West Germany, 1982) and Lilian Thuram (two v Croatia, 1998).

The victor will play the victor of England-Croatia in the World Cup Final this weekend.

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"But everyone is happy with what we have", he said, adding that he would still watch remaining games, supporting Belgium.

"In honour of our England getting to the semi-final, we've made a decision to decorate one of our buses to show our support". All the celebrations inspire us as players to bring the nation together and put smiles on people's faces. Modric and Rakitic have been brilliant all tournament and have created all kinds of havoc for teams in the middle of the field; look for them to do more of the same in this game. I'm very proud of them.

True to his word, after England beat Sweden on Saturday (July 7) to book a semi-final spot, Stewart started looking at getting hold of a golden ticket to the game.

It might even end with an England-France final. We've played five hard games and they've taken their toll. Belgium reached the quarterfinals at the 2014 World Cup and the European Championship in 2016 but has yet to fulfill its lofty expectations. In 2006, they were beaten in a penalty shootout by Italy in a World Cup final that was overshadowed by Zidane headbutting opposing player Marco Materazzi in the chest in extra time.

"I think he has built on the potential of the team", said De Bruyne.

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