After 62 matches and hundreds of minutes of blood, sweat and tears the world cup final showdown is set for France vs Croatia in Moscow. So are they the most deserving teams? Lets break it down.
France started their campaign very slow and eventually grew into the tournament. They are a team full of flicks and flair. For me Mbappe has been the x factor in that team. When he runs with the ball you get sense that something special is about to happen. A team full of individual quality and have surprisingly managed to play as a team. In their opening match against Australia they struggled and got a 2-1 win. In their most memorable match, France ended the hopes of Argentina and Lionel Messi with a breathtaking display. Mbappe was in the score sheet as he scored twice in five minutes just past the hour mark as Les Bleus stormed back from behind to seal victory in a memorable seven-goal thriller. Then came Belgium, a game i thought would be a cracker but was deflated and settled by a solitary goal. Pogba stood out in the midfield shielding the ball and and making valuable crosses for Mbappe to run with. The only mistake they can make is to underestimate Croatia.
Now enter Croatia a team full of fight and heart. A team i had tipped to go far. The so called ‘underdog’. A team that has gone to extra time thrice and their latest prey being England. They have won all their games in the tournament my word!! I have really been impressed by how they find a way to get results. I think Modric can run to Croatia he doesn’t need a plane ticket. The way he controls the midfield and still finds the energy to run in extra time is out of this world! As i said in my earlier piece they are a complete team, balanced.
Croatia kicked off their campaign with a win against Nigeria. A first-half own goal from Oghenekaro Etebo set them on their way and captain Luka Modric sealed victory from the penalty spot. They then humbled two time champions Argentina 3-0 and at this point you could sense they were a special bunch very solid and lethal. Then came the extra time run which resulted in two penalty shoot out against Denmark and Russia.
Now you know i have to talk about the England game. Personally i couldn’t identify with the logic ‘its coming home’ for this team. It is really mind blowing that a team that had not proved itself in any manner could go all the way and win it. By the 70th minute England players were so tired they could barely move and yeah they are one of the youngest team in the world cup. The arrogance and hype of their media and punditry made it seem they had won it in the first half forgetting football is 90 minutes and in that case they underestimated a Croatian team that fought its way to the semis. They were overrun in the midfield and the flanks. Versaljko was just fantastic in the right wing and his crosses were dangerous hence the Perisic goal. Mandzukic who had not turned up in the game scored the winner with England left wondering what if. Vida did hold down the defense like a warrior.
So two teams with great attributes and quality in the final i couldn’t write this final chapter any better!
To this small country of Croatia i give you the power to go and conquer because you definitely earned the right to be called word cup finalists!
Team underdogs we are in the final and the view is spectacular!!