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2018 FIFA World Cup Semi-Finals: 5 Players to watch out for

Some of the biggest stars of the world football. Top five players who could make a difference for their respective teams.

Last updated: 10.07.2018
2018 FIFA World Cup Semi-Finals: 5 Players to watch out for | Sports Social Blog

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After three weeks of intense battle and hard work, 2018 FIFA World Cup has reached its penultimate stage with the semifinal kick-starting from Tuesday.

A couple of exciting matches are in store for us. In the first semi-final, France will take on Belgium in Saint Petersburg Stadium, then England will lock horns with Croatia on the following day at the iconic Luzhniki Stadium.

While Les Blues thumped Uruguay (2-0) in the quarter-final, Belgium had the better of Brazil. England won comprehensively against Sweden and Croatia ended Russia's dream-run in the penalties. All these four teams have an equal chance to win the coveted trophy. The unpredictable nature and a slew of upsets has made this edition by far the best World Cup in recent memory.


Some of the biggest stars of the world football will up against each other in this crucial stage of the competition. However, we will focus on top five players who could make a difference for their respective teams.

#Antoine Griezmann (France)

Atletico Madrid’s star is a vital player for France. Griezmann's combination play with Mbappe and his diminutive ball skills makes him a must-have in this French side.

He is a hard-working player and has great technical abilities. Griezmann, mainly a striker but can play the role of an attacking midfielder as well. Griezmann brings much-needed balance for France with his link-up play between midfield and forward lines. Griezmann's quality to take accurate penalties and set-pieces in pressure situations of the match could come in handy against Roberto Martinez's side.

Possessing the rare quality of being able to strike with both feet, Griezmann has already scored three goals in the competition. He is one such player whom the Red Devils will have to keep an eye on.

While Didier Deschamps side has played some attractive football and never really looked in trouble throughout the tournament until now, many think that France still has not played their best football. The likes of Griezmann, Mbappe, and Pogba have a lot of potential and capability to perform much better than they have done so far in the World Cup. France will have

to play their best game to overcome Belgium's challenge.

Griezmann is a big match player and he will have to take more responsibility against the Red Devils. In Euro 2016 Griezmann was the top scorer and bagged the player of the tournament award. He has all the experience in the world to make a difference in the semifinal.

#Kevin De Bruyne (Belgium)

He is one of the finest talents in world football at the moment. Needless to say his importance in this Belgium side is immense. De Bruyne had a terrific season with his Premier League Club Manchester City and helped them to lift the title for the 3rd time.

He not only creates opportunities for his teammates with his accurate passes but also has the ability to score goals from long distance.

De Bruyne had a fantastic game against Brazil in the quarter-final and bagged the Man of the Match award. Kevin also scored the decisive goal against Brazil with a fantastic shot from just outside the penalty area.

And on Tuesday France will have to nullify him if they want to progress further in the competition.

#Thibaute Courtois (Belgium)

Courtois is one of the best goalkeepers in Europe. He plays a key role for Belgium as the last line of defence. Courtois perhaps played the best game of his life in Kazan.

He was the best player on view in the game against Brazil. And without his heroics under the bar, the Red Devils would have been out from the quarterfinal stages of the tournament.

Courtois made five brilliant saves that kept the Red Devils in the hunt right throughout the game against Brazil. After the game against Brazil, he has become Belgium's most popular player.

Courtois hasn't played that well for his club Chelsea in this season but he is certainly making amends for his national side in this World Cup. He is definitely one of the contenders to win the Golden Glove award.

#Harry Kane (England)

England has qualified for the first time in the last four of the football's mega event since 1990.

The main reason behind the revival of three lions is their captain Harry Kane, who has been absolutely superb and led from the front in the World Cup so far.

fBefore the start of the tournament, nobody had given them a chance to go this far in the tournament. But under the leadership of Harry Kane, the current England side played fantastically brand of football right throughout the competition.

Kane has scored 6 goals so far in the competition and is looking good to get the Golden Boot if everything goes well. Most importantly, he has scored when his team needed it the most.

Harry's ability to perform well under pressure would come in handy in the semi-final as well.

Now, the football experts around the world believe that the Harry Kane-led English side has the potential to become the World Champions for the first time since 1966.

#Luka Modric (Croatia)

Modric is the mainstay in the midfield for Croatia. Real’s star is a fantastic playmaker and does his job without any fuss. In fact, he is one of the best-attacking midfielders in the world. Modric and Rakitic have a fantastic understanding between them. And their lethal combination has worked well for Zlatko Dalic's side.

Even though Modric is an attacking midfielder but he can also play in several midfield positions. He is basically a carrier of a ball and has the ability to make late runs with the ball that catches the opponent unaware.

Modric has already won two Man of the Match awards for his outstanding performance in the game against Nigeria and Argentina respectively. His brilliant performance has helped Croatia immensely to reach the last four of the competition for the first time since 1998.

He would definitely like to make his mark in the semi-final and put the slightly inexperienced English defence under pressure with all his trickery on the field. The 32-year-old Croat would definitely like to take his side into the final and perhaps this is Croatia's best chance to win the World Cup for the very first time.

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