world cup matchday 10 preview

12:30    23 Jun 2018

Belgian player Romelu Lukaku (C) and teammates during a training at the Spartak Stadium, in Moscow, Russia, 22 June 2018. Belgium will face Tunisia in their FIFA World Cup 2018 Group G preliminary round soccer match on 23 June 2018. EPA/FELIPE TRUEBA
Matchday 10 of the 2018 World Cup opens with a Group G clash between Belgium and Tunisia in Moscow, and wraps up with defending champions Germany looking to bounce back when they face Sweden in Sochi.

The day’s action gets underway at the Otkritie Arena where Tunisia’s ‘Carthage Eagles’ will have the tough task of trying to quell Belgium’s attacking power.

The North Africans put in a battling display against England earlier in the week and were somewhat unfortunate to go down 2-1, but the prospect of coming up against ‘Red Devils’ players such as Eden Hazard, Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku is an entirely different prospect.

Yet coach Nabil Maaloul and his side must take an aggressive approach if they are to turn their tournament around and Panama showed that there are a few cracks in Belgium’s defence – perhaps Tunisia will succeed where the debutants failed.

We then move on to Rostov-on-Don, where South Korea and Mexico will do battle in Group F. Both teams recorded 1-0 scorelines in their opening games, but while South Korea’s loss to Sweden was more or less expected, Mexico’s defeat of Germany was a real eye-opener.

‘El Tri’ have long been a team which over-promise and under-deliver at major tournaments. If they can follow up a win over the defending champions with another – albeit against a ‘lesser’ team – then Mexico will truly step forward as a team to be reckoned with at Russia 2018.

Saturday’s action wraps up with Germany taking on Sweden in a European derby. While the Scandinavian side is still riding high after their narrow triumph over Korea, ‘Der Mannschaft’ have been licking their wounds after a surprise loss.

Coach Joachim Low’s side will look to hit back in emphatic fashion, but a well-organised Sweden will not be easy prey.

Matchday 10, Saturday 23 June – Fixtures

Group G – Belgium v Tunisia – Otkritie Arena, Moscow, 14h00
Group F – South Korea v Mexico – Rostov Arena, Rostov-on-Don, 17h00
Group F – Germany v Sweden – Fisht Olympic Stadium, Sochi, 20h00

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