Sports

Blaise Matuidi returns for France, Belgium draft in Mousa Dembele

Blaise Matuidi returns for France, Belgium draft in Mousa Dembele

"When he plays in that forward role, when he plays a bit more in the final third his play, his performance, is very, very attractive and maybe then it gets a bigger recognition, " Martinez said.

If you don't have cable, you can still watch the World Cup for free with a digital antenna, which costs around $30.

Belgium managed to deny Neymar last time out, but they must now do the same with Mbappe who dismantled Argentina in the last 16.

"Vive la France! Vive la Republique!" Will it be France; Belgium; England or Croatia?

"I'm totally blown away, this is insane", said 41-year-old Gilles Rove in Paris' Belleville neighbourhood.

France have reached the World Cup final after beating Belgium 1-0 in St Petersburg.

After reaching the quarterfinals at the 2014 World Cup and the European Championship in 2016, Belgium again missed the chance to get to an global final and has yet to fulfil its lofty expectations.

More news: All eyes on World Cup semis

"I do not want to denigrate the Belgium team of the time, there were very good players, but at that time, it was France". No player in either side has taken more shots on target for either side than this duo (both on five), while Eden Hazard is the only player to take more touches in the opponents' penalty areas. "It was so painful two years ago we have to savor it". Deschamps is gunning for history as the third man to win the World Cup as both player and coach (after Brazil's Mario Zagallo and Germany's Franz Beckenbauer).

King Philippe of Belgium, President of France, Emmanuel Macron, and Belgium Foreign Minister, Didier Reyndersall, were in attendance and enjoying each other's company up in the VIP box. From a corner, the defender beat Belgium's Marouane Fellaini to the ball and expertly angled it into the back of the net with the side of his head for what would be the game's only goal. As France captain, Deschamps won soccer's most prized trophy in 1998. "At the time, there wasn't the jersey of Belgium, that's why we wore the one of France".

"The frustration is there because we didn't lose to a team who are better than us, we lost to a team who play nothing, just defend".

Deschamps has been rightly criticized for the inconsistent form France has displayed during his six-year tenure. France have the personnel to take this game wide open, especially with Belgium being sloppy on the defensive end at times.

Up in the corporate seats, French President Emmanuel Macron reacted to the goal by shaking the hand of King Philippe of Belgium as Federation Internationale de Football Association president Gianni Infantino watched on between them. The match kicks-off at 20:00 hrs (BST) at Krestovsky Stadium in St. Petersburg.

After winning back-to-back penalty shootouts to reach their second-ever (1998) World Cup semifinal, Croatia's tank will be closer to empty than any of the four sides still competing in Russian Federation, but Modric believes they can dig deep once more and qualify for the final.