Categories: AnalysisInternational NewsSportsTPM Exclusive

Previewing Day 20 of the FIFA World Cup

Part of our 2018 FIFA World Cup Hub

The quarterfinals of the world’s biggest sporting event kick-off on Friday, with games starting at 10am and 2pm.

Belgium would match their best performance by reaching the semifinals for the 2nd time, after Mexico 1986.

The two winners will play each other in a semifinal on Tuesday, July 10.

URU v FRA

Two-time champions Uruguay face off against the more favoured one-time champion France. Uruguay won at Uruguay 1930 and Brazil 1950. France won at France 1998. At Brazil 2014, Uruguay were eliminated by Colombia in the Round of 16, while France were eliminated by Germany in the quarterfinals.

These sides first met at the 1924 Olympics in Paris, France, also in the quarterfinals. Uruguay won 5-1, eliminating France and going on to win Gold. Uruguay wears a star on their uniform in remembrance of that victory.

They also met in the Group Stage of England 1966, where Uruguay won 2-1. France were eliminated, and Uruguay were eliminated in the next round by Germany.

They met again in the Group Stage of Korea-Japan 2002, where France came to defend their World Cup title. That encounter ended in a goalless draw. Both teams would fail to make it to the next round.

They met once again in the Group Stage of South Africa 2010, again playing out a goalless draw. France would be eliminated while Uruguay would go on to the semifinals.

Their last encounter was a 1-0 Uruguayan victory during a 2013 friendly held in Uruguay.

This will be their 4th World Cup meeting, and France will be the favourites.

France to Advance: 65.2%

Uruguay to Advance: 34.8%

BRA v BEL

Five-time champions take on Belgium, a traditionally overrated team that has been impressive so far at Russia 2018. Brazil were champions at Sweden 1958, Chile 1962, Mexico 1970, USA 1994, and Korea-Japan 2002. Belgium are the only team left on this half of the bracket who have never won the World Cup. Their previous best performance was when they reached the semifinals at Mexico 1986.

These sides first met in a 1963 friendly in Belgium, where the home side beat the World Cup holders 5-1.

Their last meeting was in the Round of 16 at Korea-Japan 2002, where Brazil won 2-0, eliminating Belgium on the way to their 5th title.

This will be their 2nd World Cup meeting. Brazil are the favourites.

Brazil to Advance: 62.4%

Belgium to Advance: 37.6%

Mika Ryu

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