Never doubt my prediction

Arnav: Honestly, no surprises there. Many seem to be shocked that France managed to defeat Brazil-vanquishers Belgium. I'm not surprised at all at this result. My pre-game prediction had been 2-1 to France. I always considered them the stronger side of the two but felt that Belgium, with all their attacking riches, had it in them to score at least one.

France's solid defensive display helped Le Bleus beat Belgium in the semi-final. AP

Today though, we saw the difference between the two attacks. Lukaku, Belgium's striker, might be a more high-profile player with a better scoring record but France's Giroud, despite having had zero shots on target this tournament, is the link that binds his superstar teammates together as they attack.

Another reason I wasn't surprised at this result was something I'd brought up after the Uruguay quarter-final: once France take a lead, they can close the game down very effectively, preventing the opposition from even getting a look in. That's why Belgium needed to score first. They didn't, so they lost. On to final for Les Blues then.

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Updated Date: Jul 11, 2018 14:12 PM

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