FIFA 2018: And then there were 8


There is no doubt that the 2018 FIFA World Cup has been a tournament of upsets. Out of the last 8 teams left in the competition, only 3 are part of the Top 10 in FIFA Rankings. Here is how they stack up ahead of the Quarterfinals:

1. Brazil
The 5-Time World Champions who are ranked 2nd in the FIFA Rankings are the strongest contenders to win the 2018 World Cup. Brazil’s talismanic forward Neymar is slowly finding his rhythm and he will be the one to watch out for as Brazil take on Belgium in their Last 8 tie. It isn’t just their forward line, the Brazilian defence looks pretty solid and has conceded just 1 goal in the last 4 matches that they’ve played at the 2018 World Cup.

2. Belgium
Dark horses Belgium, almost booked their tickets to go home against Japan but by scoring 3 goals in 38 mins, Belgium came back from the brink of elimination to book a quarterfinal against 5-time Champions Brazil. The presence of former French Super start Thiery Henry in the support staff was clearly visible as the team has an all-out attack mindset. Belgium has scored 12 times in this tournament but has also conceded 5 goals. The only way Belgium can win the world cup is to plug their defence tight as the strikers are already doing a fabulous job.


3. Uruguay
Uruguay have been unbeaten in the tournament so far and their biggest win came against the European Champions Portugal. Edinson Cavani was in target twice as Uruguay edged out Portugal but with that win came some collateral damage. Cavani is still doubtful to play against France due to the Calf injury he sustained in the Round of 16 clash. The focus will be on Luis Suarez as Uruguay will play title favourites France in what is expected to be a goal-fest.

4. France
France is one of the strongest contenders left in play at the World Cup. The French looked almost asleep during the group stages and managed 2 wins from 3 games and scored just 3 goals. The round of 16 clash against Argentina is when the French side really woke up. Kylian Mbappe is on song and his goal-scoring prowess will be the key behind success. France will be up against Uruguay in the Quarterfinals.


Written by: Yash Chawla. Yash is former Sports Anchor of NDTV. With over 9 years of experience as a Sports Journalist, Yash now sails with


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