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World Cup 2018 Round Up (Semifinals)

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I’ll get France v Belgium out of the way first. It was a good game for about an hour, then France just completely killed it. In the last 20 minutes or so I think the ball was in play for about a quarter of it. Belgium just couldn’t get any momentum as France went the full Mourinho.

 
It felt like Belgium went out with a bit of a whimper as they barely managed any kind of effort late on and there appeared to be little urgency in their play. That might be a bit unfair though as I think they just lost hope after France strangled the life out of them. 
 
There isn’t one team in this competition I’ve been really impressed with but France have probably been the best so far on the basis that it feels like they’ve gotten to the final without really even breaking sweat. I might be wrong on that, but they just look like they’ve played within themselves so far because they haven't been really tested. 
 
They haven’t really had to because no-one else is any good. It might have been different if Belgium had scored first and France would have had to step it up, but sadly that didn't happen. 
 
This game was great until France scored. The first half was intriguing, both teams going for it and both keepers in great form. Hazard was fucking sensational but eventually France got hold of him and his influence waned. 
 
Umtiti headed the only goal of the game from a corner. This entire World Cup has just been dominated by set-pieces, so much so that I’m starting to think Tony Pulis might be wasted in the Championship you know. Make yourself hard to beat and proficient at set-pieces and you’re making the quarters at least. 
 
It’s been a good World Cup overall but there hasn't been a truly great team and no stand out player either. For all the talk about Mbappe and Griezeman there have been games where they’ve done very little, although Mbappe has been brilliant in spurts. He's a bad cheating bastard though. 
 
The key to what France has done has been the defence and keeper. They’re tough to play against and when teams have created chances Lloris has made some great saves. He’s got a mistake in him, but he makes some unbelievable stops.  
 
Varane has been imperious at the back too. I’d probably make him Player of the Tournament at this point but he won’t get it because he’s a centre half. Same reason Big Dejan will be overlooked. If France win, Mbappe should get it, if it's Croatia then give it to Modric. 
 
Despite their relative cruise to the final, I don’t know if Deschamps is any good or not. He’s got a massively talented squad but do they match the sum of their parts? Doesn’t really matter I suppose, they’re in the final so he’s doing something right. Or at least he's not doing anything too shit.
 
He hasn’t aged well at all though. In fact, I’m struggling to think of too many players who have aged worse. He looks about 70. In fact, he looks like Mark Hughes’ dad. 
 
Hazard said afterwards he’s rather lose playing like Belgium than win playing like France. Mate, you play for fucking Chelsea. There's no idealist moral highground to be had here. You’ve won shit with Mourinho and Conte and I didn’t see you handing back any medals. Saying that, he once went 12 months without scoring a league just to get rid of Mourinho so maybe he does actually mean what he says. 

 

This is just a teaser, click here to view the full article

 

Please note, World Cup Round Ups are only be available to TLW subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £2 a month (you need to register first, registration is FREE) and can be purchased here.

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Agree 100% with your stance on Ingerlund and the twats who are anti us among their support.

 

Expect you to get called out about it though as people like myself and others have been over last month

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Brazil were a good team. Bit of a freak that Belgium knocked them out.

 

Agree to a point. I thought they played well against Belgium and didn't deserve to go out. Don't think they're that great though, but in comparison to everyone else they're arguably the best along with France.

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Agree 100% with your stance on Ingerlund and the twats who are anti us among their support.

 

Expect you to get called out about it though as people like myself and others have been over last month

 

Each to their own. Some of my mates were supporting England and that's fine. I respect that. They respect my right not to support them.

 

There's no right and wrong here, it's purely about how you feel. Some can put all the shit aside and support the team, some of us can't get past all that stuff and want them to lose.

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That summary of England’s World Cup is the best thing I’ve read all summer.

 

Can we have round ups for every international break, please?

 

I'd have to watch internationals for that to happen, and I only ever watch the major tournaments.

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Each to their own. Some of my mates were supporting England and that's fine. I respect that. They respect my right not to support them.

 

There's no right and wrong here, it's purely about how you feel. Some can put all the shit aside and support the team, some of us can't get past all that stuff and want them to lose.

Each to their own is right - but been a few dicey comments aimed at those of us who choose not to stand with the Ingerlund thing....interesting to see if same comments are aimed at the site owner...

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The best part of this is that it was his miss that was the turning point. He’s getting shit for not squaring to Sterling and the accusation is that he went on his own because he’s obsessed with winning the Golden Boot. 

Go for goal or pass to Sterling ? Each option has its pitfalls. 

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I've been bemused at the smoke blown up Southgate's arse. There are thermophile bacteria living in the icy oceans of Europa who knew full well that Croatia's midfield was their ace in the hole and that Modric and Rakitic are their two main players. For some reason, Southgate played three against four, and two of them were Dele Alli and Lingard. Henderson had no time to do anything except hit it long, he had no one to pass to. 

 

Bringing on Loftus Cheek for Sterling seemed obvious, or even for one of the centre-halves. But he basically handed the game to a hard-working but knackered side. England lost their best chance of a major final in decades because the manager got out tactic'd by Roger Federer's dad. Not, incidentally, that I care (by the way, although Croatia the team may be likable, their fans are every bit as bad as England's).

 

As for the defence - Walker at centre-half was a liability. He bookended the tournament by making mistakes that resulted in two out of the five goals that England let in. 

 

And yes, this latest round-up is quite masterful.

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I totally agree about England they played no-one and got knocked out against the first good team they came up against. The BBC said "they shook up the football world".....how by beating Panama,Tunisia,Columbia,and Sweden?

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Brazil were a good team. Bit of a freak that Belgium knocked them out.

Brazil issue was the coach not giving Firmino a shot. Jesus looked crap. And Neymar being a giant ballbag all tournament

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I think this world cup is just more proof that the standard of footballers is at an all time low.  None of the smaller teams that went far are really anything special at all.  No Hagi's or Stoichkov's.  Overall it's been unpredictable but very little quality on show.

 

The generation of pampered kids and their computers were never going produce as many great players as those who kicked a ball until the lights went out.

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I think this world cup is just more proof that the standard of footballers is at an all time low.  None of the smaller teams that went far are really anything special at all.  No Hagi's or Stoichkov's.  Overall it's been unpredictable but very little quality on show.

 

The generation of pampered kids and their computers were never going produce as many great players as those who kicked a ball until the lights went out.

My lad's friends were horrified when I suggested playing football outside WITH A FUCKING BALL.  To them, it was all about the console/PC and whatever cunty incarnation of the latest game is.  Any time they do go out for a kickabout they're back in 20 minutes.

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I've been bemused at the smoke blown up Southgate's arse. There are thermophile bacteria living in the icy oceans of Europa who knew full well that Croatia's midfield was their ace in the hole and that Modric and Rakitic are their two main players. For some reason, Southgate played three against four, and two of them were Dele Alli and Lingard. Henderson had no time to do anything except hit it long, he had no one to pass to. 

 

 

And yes, this latest round-up is quite masterful.

Especially, in the second half when England went into full "Don't Panic" mode and basically played with a flat back five cutting out the options of even a square pass for Henderson.

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Good round up Dave. I wanted England to win but I can see the counter argument of why you might not. And yes the Henderson thing really pissed me off "Oh, look how shit this guy is". Well, pretty much EVERYBODY looks shit against Luka Modric. And you ignore the fact that he was after playing 28 England games in a row that they hadn't lost. Or that he played in a team that were in the Champions League final this year and reached England's first semi-final in 28 years. And finally, if you think Henderson's performance was bad, I can't wait to see the "highlight" reel of Eric Dire's tournament

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