Gents, How did your previous predictions turn out and what were the biggest surprises leading to the semi finals? How do you see it playing out from here?
Greg - BriPhi looks a lot smarter than I do to this point...we were both on France, and he called the full-on EuroFinal. I'm amazed by the Year of the Underdog...not completely, but the teams that have gone home so far...wouldn't have guessed (as I've proven in this very space). I'm seeing a France-England final...France dominates theirs, and England in a close one. As far as the final, my heart says England, but my head says France. The Battle of the Channel!
The plus for England is that while Harry Kane had an off-night in the scoring column, his mates picked up for him. I do think the Golden Boot goes home with Kane.
Brian P. - I'll stick with France and agree with Greg that I like England to get through on the other end. France/Belgium will be wildly entertaining. For France's sake they need to be prepared for the Belgium counter attack way better than Brazil was. Brazil did a terrible job there.
My main surprise at this point was how well Russia did. They were at a serious talent disadvantage versus most of the field. It's been fun! Entertaining World Cup to be sure.
Greg - The X factor for France is Mbappe's speed. I don't think the Belgian defenders have anyone who has the wheels to stay with him.