Today marks the start of the final games in the group stage of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. For some nations, there’s still a lot to play for so we should be in store for a cracking day of action.
Match 1: Saudi Arabia v Egypt
Both of these nations have been eliminated from the tournament, however, neither of these two sides will want to walk away from the World Cup having achieved 0 points.
Although Saudi Arabia have yet to score this tournament, they delivered a much improved performance in their narrow 1-0 defeat to Uruguay. Maybe that will give them the kick start they need to find the back of the net.
Egypt are still searching for their first ever win in FIFA World Cup history and their 45 year old goalkeeper, Essam El-Hadry, will become the oldest player in World Cup history if he features today.
Match 2: Uruguay v Russia
The winners of Group A will be decided in this match between Uruguay and Russia. However, it appears that it doesn’t really matter who finishes top because they will face either Spain or Portugal in the Round of 16. Then again, if Iran were to upset Portugal later today, then the Group A winners would face them, so maybe there is something to play for.
Uruguay have to beat Russia in order to top the group due to Russia’s superior goal difference. As previously mentioned, the winner of this Group could possibly face Iran so it would be vital for Luis Suarez and co to get three points today.
Russia currently sit top of the group due to their 5-0 drubbing of Saudia Arabia and they know that as long as they avoid defeat, that’s where they’ll stay.
Match 3: Iran v Portugal
Both of these teams could be eliminated tonight so it promises to be a very intense game.
Iran know that if they beat Portugal, they will be through to the Round of 16 for the first time in their history. However, a draw may also take them through if Spain were to lose to Morocco by two goals.
As long as Portugal avoid defeat they will be through to the next round. Cristiano Ronaldo has been on fire this year and his good form so far in the World Cup has carried his nation to the brink of the knockout stages.
Match 4: Spain v Morocco
Morocco were eliminated by Portugal last week so they have nothing to play for other than national pride and not finishing this tournament with 0 points.
Spain on the other hand, are all but through to the Round of 16 after beating Iran. However, they must avoid defeat by two goals because if that was to happen and Iran and Portugal draw, the 2010 World Cup Winners would be eliminated at the group stage for the second consecutive year.
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