We finally reached July 15 th , the day on which we will find out which country will win the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The biggest game in the soccer world will face the teams from France and Croatia. While for France this is something expected, for Croatia the positive shock is something amazing. The whole nation waits for this final even though that everyone understands that France is the total favorite. We are not going to continue speaking in general about this final and we will right away discuss the details of the final that will be played in Moscow.
1. July 15th – France vs. Croatia
The biggest game in the soccer world or the duel between Didier Deschamps and Zlatko Dalic is the most anticipated battle for this year. So far both teams had proved that they are the best two in the world. France started off really stable and easily went to its group with the teams from Denmark, Australia and Peru. The opposition in the groups was not a serious test for France, but in the eliminations’ stage, the French national soccer team established itself as the top favorite. It all started with the amazing comeback and elimination of Leo Messi and Argentina. After this game, France basically declared that the team came to Russia only with the mindset to win the trophy. The next ‘’victim’’ of France was Uruguay that was followed by Belgium. In all these games France was the dominant team and for not even a single half they did not show weak points. The whole French squad works as a whole and the chemistry in the team is on a top level which can be counted as the biggest success of Didier Deschamps. If the best part of the French squad is the attack with players like Antoine Griezmann and Kyllian Mbappe we can also note that the position of the central striker is probably the only part of the team that can be labeled as problematic. Olivier Giroud had been playing on a good level, but he just had not shown to the world that he is the much-needed goal scorer that can finish the attacks of its team.
France and Croatia meet Sunday in Moscow for the final of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, a tournament that has carried echoes of the 1998 competition right up to its final game.
The performance of Giroud in the final game will be really important for France. The other section in the French squad that could create problems is the central defender's partnership between Raphael Varane and Samuel Umtiti. Varane and Umtiti are fairly stable but they are vulnerable to single huge mistakes which can be used by a ‘’predator’’ like Mario Mandzukic. If favorite France has few things to worry about, the situation for Croatia is not much different. The road to the final for Croatia was much more exhausting and harder for the Eastern European country that will make its first appearance at the World Cup Final game. Croatia crushed its group opponents Iceland, Nigeria and Argentina to win the first place in its group. After that the ‘’penalty’’ drama started for the Croatians. Firstly, they eliminated Denmark after penalties, later on the hosts from Russia were knocked again after penalties. When everyone thought that the Croatian fairytale will end against England at the semi-finals Croatia showed to the world that the team has an amazing team chemistry and the whole squad works as a whole.
Croatia successfully eliminated England and once again destroyed the hopes of the English fans. While the best side of the Croatian squad is the perfect team chemistry, there are some details around the squad that can be labeled as weak. We start with the left side of the defense of Croatia where Ivan Strinic is the starter for the team. His performance so far is surely not on a top level and if he does not concentrate and not receive help from his teammate the wingers of France which are the strongest part of the French team will just destroy him during the final game. Unfortunately ,this is not the only problem for Croatia and Zlatko Dalic. In general Croatia had played 90 extra minutes more than France which combined with the fact that the Croatians used no more than 13-14 player rotation would mean that the team will be much more exhausted than its opponent. This will be probably overcome by the adrenaline that will boost the Croatians, but in a tough game like the final of the World Cup, this can make the difference. All in all, we can conclude that France and Croatia are the best two teams at this World Cup and we can expect a great game from them. The most anticipated thing for this fixture is to see a limited number of goals since this is the final of the World Cup, but if we see an early goal this might change. The mind and the brain tells to the neutral fan that France will win, while the heart is screaming continue the fairytale for Croatia…