Top of the group, or second

Belgium appeared to be a reluctant victor.

Germany failed to make it past the World Cup group stage. Tomorrow we want to perform well but the priority is not to win.

This means that if both teams draw tomorrow, the tiebreaker of who wins the group will be determined by "fair play points" which essentially means the team who has fewer cards.

With the victory, Belgium gets what appears to be an easier match in the next round against Japan on Monday in Rostov-on-Don. Spain, Portugal, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina and Colombia have all been pushed to the limit in their groups, with only France having a similarly easy ride into the round of 16. 'I think here we've played extremely well. "You have seen big nations coming very close to elimination, or already eliminated". The teams feature 35 players from last season's Premier League between them, including the entire England roster, and are playing for the top spot in Group G as they both have two victories in two matches. So that has come into his thinking and Southgate, i understands, has been chopping and changing with potential line-ups in training this week, since the thumping win against Panama on Sunday.

Does he rest Harry Kane, or unleash his captain and the tournament's top scorer?

Reach the final from there, and England will face whoever has emerged from the other side of the draw.

"When you are a leader and a manager you have to make decisions that are right for your group and your primary objectives". The leading scorer in Russian Federation with five goals watched the match from the bench. But Belgium, who also started without Eden Hazard or Romelu Lukaku, had the first real chance as midfielder Youri Tielemans smashed an effort from 25 yards out which was well parried by Jordan Pickford. "We've not won a knockout game since 2006", he said in response to a journalist's question about who he would prefer to face in the semi-final. "We know our strongest 11, but what's pleasing is that there are guys that have put their hand up tonight to really push for a place".

English fans celebrate their team's opener match at the Fifa Fan Fest area in Kaliningrad.

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Moments later Pickford let a Michy Batshuayi effort squeeze past him and was rescued by Gary Cahill's goal-line clearance.

On the other end, Kane's replacement up front for England, Jamie Vardy, tried his luck with a header.

We round up Wednesday's talking points from Russian Federation as England finish second in Group G, and Fair Play makes a big call.

The second half saw the game's only goal as Adnan Januzaj squared Danny Rose up on the right wing before shifting the ball onto his left foot and bending it into the top corner.

In 2013, then-England manager Roy Hodgson announced his staff were monitoring the progress of Januzaj, should the player become a naturalized British citizen, but the player appearing for England would have breached Federation Internationale de Football Association rules.

Born in Brussels, Belgium, into a Kosovan-Albanian family, Adnan Januzaj's heritage is as complex as they come. After a detour at Borussia Dortmund and Sunderland, he found a new home previous year at Real Sociedad.

I know in some quarters that will be criticised but I am entirely comfortable with that. Now I wanted to show people I'm here, " Januzaj said after his goal. "I've been putting in a lot of work".

Belgium and England have been two of the most impressive teams at the 2018 World Cup thus far, though they haven't exactly faced tough competition as of yet.

  • Michelle Webb