Monday, July 16, 2018
2018 FIFA World Cup
More from 2018 FIFA World Cup
16 July 2018: FIFA World Cup 2018: Belgium beats England 2-0 to claim third place finish
13 July 2018: FIFA World Cup 2018 semifinals: Croatia sends England home, 2-1
13 July 2018: FIFA World Cup 2018 semifinals: Umtiti scores only goal, France reaches finals beating Belgium
10 July 2018: FIFA World Cup 2018 quarterfinals: England beats Sweden, Croatia knocks out hosts Russia
9 July 2018: FIFA World Cup 2018 quarterfinals: France, Belgium beat Uruguay, Brazil
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On Saturday, Belgium defeated England 2–0 in the third-place match of the 2018 FIFA Football World Cup. Thomas Meunier scored an early goal and Eden Hazard doubled the lead for Belgium in the 82nd minute to seal off the third place at the tournament.
England had more ball possession. Meunier opened the scoring for Belgium in the 4th minute, scoring a right-footed shot from within the penalty box, from Nacer Chadli's assist. Chadli was in an offside position in the 13th minute, from Vincent Kompany's through ball. In the 23rd minute, English striker Harry Kane missed a chance to equalise from Raheem Sterling's assist. In the 39th minute, Belgium made their first substitution. Chadli was substituted off due to injury and was replaced by Thomas Vermaelen. Just before the first half whistle, Belgium tried to double the lead but Romelu Lukaku and Kevin De Bryune's attempts were blocked.
In the second half, England made a double substitution, as Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford came on for Danny Rose and Sterling. English defender John Stones was the first to get a yellow card. He was booked in the 52nd minute for a bad foul. At the one-hour mark, Lukaku was taken off for Dries Mertens. In the 70th minute, Rashford assisted Eric Dier, and Dier nearly equalised for England, chipping the ball over Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, but the attempt was blocked by Belgian defense. Moments later, Harry Maguire tried to head the ball in the goal, but the ball went wide. Maguire was booked in the 76th minute. English goalkeeper Jordan Pickford stopped Belgium from doubling their lead in the 80th minute on the counter-attack, but two minutes later, Belgium scored their second goal. De Bryune assisted Hazard, and Hazard scored a right-footed shot from within the penalty area. In the injury time, Axel Witsel was shown a yellow card. Moments later, the referee blew the final time whistle and Belgium won the third place in the tournament.
After the match, Belgium's coach Roberto Martínez said, "We wanted to win it. When you beat Brazil and get into the semi-final, the focus has to be to try to win the World Cup. But you need to be realistic when you finish the tournament and look back. These players made history back in Belgium and that's all that matters. These players deserve to have that accolade."
English coach Gareth Southgate said, "In the end we are very proud of what we've done. We're under no illusions as to where we stand as a team; we've finished in the final four but we're not a top-four team yet, we know that and we've never hidden behind that. Against the very best teams we've come up short but we've had a wonderful adventure and some experiences that will stand this group of players and staff in really good stead for the future. I couldn't ask any more of any of the players today or right the way through the seven weeks we've worked together."
Hazard won the Budweiser Man of the Match award.
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July 14, 2018 1700 MSK (UTC+0300)
Saint Petersburg Stadium, Saint Petersburg, Russia Attendance: 64,406 Referee: Alireza Faghani (Iran)
Thomas Meunier 4'Eden Hazard 82'Axel Witsel 90+3'Nacer Chadli 39'Thomas Vermaelen 39'Romelu Lukaku 60'Dries Mertens 60'Youri Tielemans 78'Mousa Dembélé 78'
John Stones 52'Harry Maguire 76'Danny Rose 46'Jesse Lingard 46'Raheem Sterling 46'Marcus Rashford 46'Ruben Loftus-Cheek 84'Dele Alli 84'
"FIFA World Cup 2018 quarterfinals: France, Belgium beat Uruguay, Brazil" — Wikinews, July 9, 2018
Simon Massart and Laure James. "2018 FIFA World Cup Russia - Matches - Belgium - England" — FIFA, July 14, 2018
Phil McNulty. "World Cup 2018: England finish fourth after Belgium defeat" — BBC Sport, July 14, 2018
FIFA. "Belgium v England - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia - Play-off for third place" — YouTube, July 14, 2018