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From Paris to Moscow, France fans go wild after thrilling World Cup win

PARIS/MOSCOW: Millions of French fans were overwhelmed with joy on Sunday as France beat Croatia 4-2 to win soccer’s World Cup in a pulsating final in Moscow, sparking ecstatic scenes of celebration from Paris to Marseille, from Lyon to Lille. In the capital, where 90,000 people watched the match on vast TV screens next to the Eiffel tower, there were choruses of the Marseillaise, honking horns and hundreds of thousands of red, white and blue tricolor flags fluttering on the breeze. The boom of fireworks and…

France overpower Croatia 4-2 to win World Cup

MOSCOW: France overwhelmed Croatia 4-2 in the World Cup final at Moscow’s Luzhniki stadium on Sunday to lift the trophy for the second time in 20 years. The French, playing their third World Cup final, were made to sweat initially and were lucky to go ahead when Croatia striker Mario Mandzukic headed an Antoine Griezmann free kick into his own net in the 18th minute, the first own goal in a World Cup final. ALLEZ! #WorldCup pic.twitter.com/XZVFIxJMSU — FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) July 15, 2018 Only one stat…

France and Croatia seek World Cup glory

MOSCOW: Croatia face France in Moscow on Sunday attempting to win their first World Cup while Didier Deschamps´ side are aiming to land their second title two decades on from their triumph on home soil. France will also be spurred on by trying to put behind them the bitter disappointment of losing the Euro 2016 final to Portugal in Paris. It is a final few people anticipated when football´s global showpiece kicked off four weeks ago. Croatia have brought joy to their Balkan nation of just four million people by…

France not expecting tired Croatia in World Cup final

MOSCOW: France have been surprised by the physical fortitude of Croatia and are not expecting a tired opponent in Sunday’s World Cup final, midfielder Blaise Matuidi said on Friday. Croatia have been forced into extra time in each of their three knockout matches, edging Denmark and hosts Russia on post-match penalties before scoring late in added play to come from behind and beat England in Wednesday’s semi-final in Moscow. France by contrast have won all of their matches since the round of 16 inside 90 minutes,…

Croatia head for first World Cup final after foiling England

MOSCOW: Croatia began preparations for the first World Cup final in their history on Thursday after they came from behind to crush England's hopes in an enthralling contest. The Balkan nation of just four million people will play France on Sunday after Mario Mandzukic's extra-time winner in Wednesday's semi-final prolonged England's 52-year wait to reach a second World Cup final. England roared into the lead in just the fifth minute through Kieran Trippier's superb free-kick, but Croatia hit back through Ivan Perisic…

Croatia v England: semi-final history factbox

MOSCOW: Here is a brief history of previous World Cup semi-final appearances by England and Croatia, ahead of their last four match at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium on Wednesday: - England’s first semi-final appearance at a World Cup came at their home tournament in 1966. In front of more than 90,000 fans at Wembley Stadium, Bobby Charlton put them ahead with a rebound shot from a clearance in the first half and added another after the break to go 2-0 up against Portugal, led by 1965 Ballon d’Or winner Eusebio. The…

England fans don waistcoats ahead of semi-final against Croatia

LONDON: The mission? To support England’s bid to win a first World Cup since 1966. The method? To wear a waistcoat for Wednesday’s semi-final match against Croatia. It might sound a stretch, but some England fans want match day in Moscow dubbed ‘Waistcoat Wednesday’ in tribute to manager Gareth Southgate, who has taken to wearing a waistcoat on the touch-line along with suit trousers and a dress shirt and tie. Around a dozen England fans travelling to Moscow on Tuesday for the match wore dark blue waistcoats over their…

Russians pray for another underdog upset

MOSCOW: Many Russian soccer fans believe their underdog national team can pull off another upset when they take on Croatia in the World Cup quarter-finals later on Saturday, allowing them to stay in the tournament against the odds. “I have always believed even though I understand our chances are small,” said Alexei Lomonosov, a Russian fan attending the game in the Black Sea resort of Sochi around 1,400 km (869.92 miles)south of Moscow. An opinion poll by state-run pollster VTsIOM, which found that most of the…