France are back in the FIFA World Cup final for the third time in the past six tournaments after beating Belgium 1-0 in the first semi-final at the St Petersburg arena on Tuesday. Centre-back Samuel Umtiti became the youngest player to score for France in a World Cup semi-final, breaking Juste Fontaine's 60 year record, when he nodded home from an Antoine Griezmann corner kick in the 51st minute.
The French had previously made it to the final in their home World Cup in 1998 where they won and in 2006 where they ended runners-up. Meanwhile, Belgium will have to wait for their first ever final but manager Roberto Martinez believed his side weren't outclassed on the day and his players deserve credit for their performance.
France's opponent will be decided on Wednesday when Croatia take on England at the Luhzniki Stadium at 1:00 pm. After topping Group ‘C’ over 2-time champions Argentina, the Croats have shown their grit, getting the better of Denmark in the Round of 16 and host nation Russia in the quarter-final, both of which they won on penalties. This is Croatia's second semi-final appearance after losing to hosts and eventual champions France in 1998.
Meanwhile, England will be looking to make their first final since they won the title in 1966. The English finished second in Group ‘F’ but beat Colombia on penalties in the Round of 16 before a comfortable 2-0 win over Sweden in the quarter-final.