World Cup diary 2018 – Saturday 14 July
Belgium (1) 2 [Meunier (4′), E Hazard (82′)]
England (0) 0
I couldn’t raise any enthusiasm for it at all and goodness know how the players did after the disappointment of Wednesday. I suppose it’s all part of getting so near and then missing out, plus the fact that I’ll won’t be able to watch the Final anyway as I’ll be somewhere over the Atlantic on the way to Lanzarote.
In the end I just couldn’t bring myself to watch it and apart from checking the scores sporadically during the game, I simply settled for watching the three minutes of highlights on the BBC website. From those brief glimpses of the game it looked like England were always on the backfoot after conceding an early goal and got done by a second Belgium effort late on. Still fourth place is far more than more of us had predicted, so credit to Gareth Southgate and the squad.
Good luck to France and Croatia tomorrow. My prediction? France to win their second World Cup on the basis that they are on paper a stronger squad overall, who have shown both flair and functionality in getting to the Final. However, my tipping has been pretty poor and maybe there is to be a new name on the trophy come Sunday evening.