Our event of the day is the Football World Cup 2018 match between England and Belgium at the Kaliningrad Stadium in Konigsberg, Russia. Both teams have performed well in the Group stage of the tournament. Each side has already punched their ticket into the knockout rounds of the tournament by way of victories over Tunisia and Panama. As the group stage comes to a close, this much-anticipated matchup will determine who comes out of Group G with the top spot. The two squads both hold identical 2 win records and have scored eight goals while allowing only two against them. The numbers would seem to suggest this will be a close affair.
However, both sides face questions regarding whether or not to rest their star players in order to keep them fit for the knockout round. For England, Manager Gareth Southgate has already hinted that his lineup will look somewhat different from the first two games. Top scorer and Golden Boot candidate Harry Kane has gone public and stated his desire to play against Belgium. Expect Southgate to start Kane but bring on a sub in place for him at some point. The young and exciting Marcus Rashford should get a nod and one would expect to see Jamie Vardy make another appearance as well. Belgium on the other hand may be a little more cautious. Manager Roberto Martinez has made it known that there will be major changes to his side for this match. It has been reported that Eden Hazard is dealing with a minor injury and star striker Romelu Lukaku will likely rest as well. Regardless of team changes, this match should be an entertaining display of world-class football between two top-notch teams.
Honourable mentions around the globe go to the Super League clash between the Wigan Warriors and Leeds Rhinos at the DW Stadium in Wigan. The seventh place Rhinos have lost six straight contests and eight of their last nine. The Warriors, who currently sit in second place in the league table, will look to take advantage of the struggling Leeds side. In the National Rugby League a tasty Round 16 matchup between the Dragons and Eels will be played at WIN Stadium in Wollongong, Australia. In AFL action, the top two teams Richmond and Sydney meet in Melbourne for a huge match at the Etihad Stadium. Elsewhere at the FIFA World Cup, Japan play Poland at Volgograd Arena; Tunisia take on Panama at Mordovia Arena in Salansk; Senegal and Colombia play in a pivotal Group H match in Samara. Staying with football, there are also six first Leg UEFA Europa League matches taking place today. The New Zealand and South Africa Women’s cricket teams continue the T20 Tri-Nation tournament, with both squads having afternoon matches against England at the County Ground in Bristol. In golf, it is the opening round of play at the European Tour HNA Open de France at Le Golf National in Guyancourt and in the United States, the PGA Tour Quicken Loans National also gets under way at TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm.
Whatever you’re watching, enjoy!
Photos by FIFA
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