The third place play-off of the 2018 World Cup is a match that neither of the losing semi-finalists want to be in, with players ready to head off onto their summer holidays for a break before the club season begins next month. It is, though, a chance for Belgium and England to leave Russia on a high, with both teams having left their mark on the topsy-turvy tournament.
Russia 2018 will be remembered fondly by both supporters across the English Channel with the Three Lions reaching the last-four for the first time in 28 years and Belgium replicating their 1986 showing. The Red Devils will be the more disappointed of the two, however, given that their team is in the middle of a golden generation; Eden Hazard, Kevin De Bruyne, Romelu Lukaku and Thibaut Courtois all play for some of the best clubs in the world and are among the finest in their respective positions.
They will now be among the leading contenders to win their first international trophy at Euro 2020 – which is being held in countries across the continent – but having beaten Brazil last weekend in the quarter-finals, Roberto Martinez would have been given belief that his men could go all the way to Sunday’s final. France defended admirably in the semis, though, and snuck a 1-0 win.
England were beaten by Croatia in extra-time despite being in control of the first-half, but a lack of clinical finishing allowed their opponents to get back into the tie. As well as reaching the last-four, Gareth Southgate has restored pride in the national side and developed a more possession-based system of play. Finally winning a penalty shootout, against Colombia in the last-16, could also be a major psychological boost in future tournaments, while Harry Kane, with six goals, is well on the way to claiming the Golden Boot.
Both managers are likely to freshen their line-ups and fringe players will get a chance, as was the case when they met in matchday three in Group G. Belgium are 2.15 favourites to win the game in normal time – this is compared to England’s 3.25. There are 145 markets in total, including the correct scoreline. View all Tipbet’s odds here.