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Brazil, Argentina goal blockbuster World Cup semi-final – Sports activities

DOHA: Brazil search to develop into the primary staff by way of to the World Cup semi-finals on Friday, whereas Argentina might arrange a blockbuster all-South American conflict in the event that they get previous the Netherlands.

After three weeks of pulsating motion, simply eight groups are left standing because the 32-nation match heads into the ultimate rounds of the knockout competitors after a two-day break.

5-time champions Brazil kick off the quarter-finals in opposition to shock 2018 runners-up Croatia, with Neymar match and firing once more after an ankle damage he suffered within the opening recreation.
“I’ll be doing every thing that I can to win with the Brazilian nationwide staff. That’s our mission and our dream,” mentioned Neymar.

“We’re getting ever nearer, we’ve acquired one other step to go now.”

Croatia are a much-changed staff from the one which reached the ultimate 4 years in the past, however 37-year-old Luka Modric stays the participant that makes them tick.

“I agree that we did an excellent factor by attending to the quarter-finals however no matter that we wish to do extra,” mentioned Modric, who will come up in opposition to his Actual Madrid teammates Vinicius Junior, Rodrygo and Eder Militao within the match at Training Metropolis Stadium.

“We all know that the best match is forward of us. Brazil are at all times favourites. We now have to be ourselves.”

Cameroon stun Brazil however exit of World Cup

Seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi is hoping to lastly finish his watch for a World Cup title with Argentina, after dropping the ultimate to Germany in further time eight years in the past.

The Copa America holders go up in opposition to the Netherlands in Friday’s second quarter-final at Lusail Stadium, the venue for the December 18 ultimate.

The 2 nations have met 5 earlier occasions on the World Cup, together with within the 1978 ultimate, which Argentina gained 3-1 after further time. Argentina have by no means crushed the Dutch in 90 minutes.

It’s a repeat of their 2014 semi-final conflict in Brazil, the place the South People gained on penalties following a 0-0 draw after 120 minutes.

“In 2014 I used to be there and issues ended barely in another way (to how we wished) however I’d like to alter that now,” Dutch ahead Memphis Depay mentioned at a pre-match press convention.

‘Fairly silly’

After Argentina’s shock loss to Saudi Arabia of their first match, Messi has dazzled in Qatar and the Dutch must nullify his impact on the sport.

“We’re not going to disclose our ways to you (about stopping Messi). It could be fairly silly to disclose your individual ways,” coach Louis van Gaal advised reporters.

“Messi is probably the most harmful artistic participant, he is ready to create quite a bit and to attain targets himself. However once they lose the ball he doesn’t take part a lot, this provides us possibilities,” he mentioned.

England acquired a lift forward of Saturday’s showdown with reigning champions France as Declan Rice returned to coaching following sickness.

Raheem Sterling can also be set to rejoin the squad on Friday after spending time in England following a theft at his residence.

Portugal have denied reviews that Cristiano Ronaldo threatened to stroll away from the staff after he was benched for his or her 6-1 rout of Switzerland within the final 16.

Ronaldo later took to social media to say that Portugal have been “too united to be damaged by outdoors forces” forward of their recreation with first-time quarter-finalists Morocco.

The 21-year-old Ramos justified Fernando Santos’ daring choice by scoring a hat-trick and offering an help on his full Portugal debut.

Morocco try to develop into the primary African staff to achieve the final 4 at a World Cup.

1000’s of Morocco followers descended on the streets of Doha after the Atlas Lions knocked out Spain on penalties within the final 16.

“We succeeded in making a household, and we really feel there’s an entire nation behind us,” mentioned coach Walid Regragui.

“You are feeling this vitality, it helps to carry out like this.”

He added: “I’ve a tremendous group, they stick by what I say and do it. I don’t understand how far we’ll go.”

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