OVERLOOKING the Gulf of Finland, the Krestovsky Stadium awaits a football classic on Tuesday evening.
England´s coach Gareth Southgate (R) and England´s forward Harry Kane celebrate after winning during the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Sweden and England at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 7, 2018. And rather than having Henry waiting on the sideline to congratulate them, Griezmann and France now have their team's former captain on the sideline trying to beat them.
France are seeking their first World Cup final since their defeat to Italy in 2006.
The only difference being is that France have history to live up to.
Kylian Mbappe has been tipped for big things for a couple of years now and he has certainly lived up to his billing in this World Cup.
Belgium´s confidence will be high after knocked out Neymar´s Brazil in the quarter-finals and they are the only team to have won all their matches in Russian Federation, top-scoring with 14 goals.
All we can say is that for two of these four sides that answer will come sooner rather than later, as today (*producer jump zoom*): one of these nations is going home.
Beyond the geographical and linguistic ties, many of these players also know each other intimately from the Premier League. "We need to be the best version of ourselves". "They are an adversary with great quality and there will be hard moments so we have be ready to suffer in order to reach the final".
At set pieces, French goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, who plays for Spurs, will be wary of the aerial threat posed by club teammates and Belgium defenders Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen.
Imagine Eden Hazard and Kylian Mbappe on the same team.
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But while De Gea had a poor tournament, Courtois enhanced reputation with an outstanding quarterfinal performance against Brazil. While there is a clear contrast in styles of the two sides, France and Belgium lock horns in a potential World Cup classic.
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I never like being comfortable - I have always looked to challenge myself. " Nobody promised me the number one shirt ". He made 176 appearances for Italy - a European record - and was voted Serie A's goalkeeper of the year 12 times.
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Not to mention Romelu Lukaku and N'Golo Kante who have also starred in Russian Federation. Fellaini has earned his place in the starting XI and will be partnering Witsel in the heart of the midfield.
Not only did this change help in pressurising the duo of Fernandinho and Paulinho, but it also gave playmaker Kevin De Bruyne the platform to take risks and put himself in advanced positions.
However, the last time the two sides met, the Belgians won 4-3 in a friendly meeting in 2015.
Belgium wing-back Thomas Meunier is suspended so will miss the match in St Petersburg. They are trained by Didier Deschamps, who won the Cup in 1998 as a player and is now trying to do the same as a coach. "Each player would be defending his colours".
But their secret weapon could be on the sidelines in the shape of one of France´s greatest players of all time, Thierry Henry, who is now head coach Roberto Martinez´s assistant.
Deschamps has the "win-at-all-costs" mentality and it's evident in his six years in-charge of France.
However, their backline will face its biggest test yet against a Belgian team that are top scorers at Russian Federation 2018 with 14 goals in their five games, with the strikes coming from nine different players - a record in diversity shared with the French team of 1982 and Italian side of 2006.
While Giroud has yet to score at this World Cup, his ability to hold the ball up suits France's system and allows Mbappe to make runs down the right flank.
He said: "Thierry is someone who lives for football".