Russian Federation 2018: Semi-final combatants set for showdown

Henry Romero  Reuters

Henry Romero Reuters

But Dalic accepted the late finish of Croatia's quarter-final, coupled with extra-time exertions against Denmark, will pose his squad a physical challenge ahead of Wednesday's semi-final in Moscow.

A lack of pace at the back against England, one of the quickest teams at the tournament, would be a big problem.

Raphaël Varane headed France on their way to a 2-0 win over Uruguay from a free kick, while Fernandinho deflected a cross from a corner into his own net to put his Brazil side behind in their eventual 2-1 defeat at the hands of Belgium.

But there is a major doubt over the participation of Vrsaljko, who hobbled off with a knee injury in extra-time during the quarter-final win over Russian Federation in Sochi.

Kieran Trippier says the support and reaction from fans to England's World Cup campaign at home and in Russian Federation continues to inspire the Three Lions squad.

With the World Cup semi-finals to kick off tonight at 6 PM, it is a close call who will take the match between France and Belgium. With his absence, coach Martinez may have to change his formation.

England are on the cusp of World Cup glory, with just one match standing in their way of reaching the final for the first time since 1966.

Yet it is England's creative, dynamic and intelligent midfield that will need to be on the top of its game against Croatia.

"There are some good ones in there, the players enjoy listening to them too, they've had a few singalongs on the way back from games and hopefully that will continue on Wednesday". Can we beat Croatia?

The Manchester United midfielder has shown his capabilities in a box-to-box role at the World Cup, helping Kante break up attacking plays and also contributing further forward with vision and creativity.

England trio Harry Kane, Kyle Walker and Harry Maguire are looking to guide their side to only their second World Cup final. What I would like is the England from before, but now they are very strong and we have to respect them.

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