90+5min: De Bruyne runs to the flag to run down the time. And it’s all over! BELGIUM advance to the semifinals!
90+4min: COURTOIS! Using all of his height to push that Neymar shot over for a corner.
90min: 5 minutes added on. Another half-hearted shout for Neymar foul in the area but not even close.
89min: Hazard collects another foul; Fagner goes in the book finally.
86min: Fresh legs for Belgium as Tielemans replaces Lukaku up front. Hazard presumably moves to nominal center forward.
85min: Fernandinho gets yellow for another foul on Hazard.
84min: Courtinho chokes away a tremendous chance after Brazil get rare opportunity to counter. Neymar’s cutback is perfect; but Torresinho shanks his shot well wide.
82min: Belgium make a defensive substitution, Chadli makes way for Vermaelen.
80min: Hazard wastes an excellent 4-v-3 counter with a weak pass for De Bruyne. At the other end, Renato Augusto loses his man but just misses his second of the game; Courtois could only watch.
78min: Firmino blasts high and wide after turning his defender.
76min: Brazil back in it! It’s been coming. A cross from Coutinho is headed in by Renato Augusto. 2-1!
75min: KDB steals a backpass but his square pass for Hazard is cut out. Brazil counter but Courtois saves from Douglas Costa, and Alderweireld blocks Neymar’s follow-up effort.
72min: Hazard draws his latest foul as Fagner steps on his Achilles. Meanwhile, Renato Augusto replaces Paulinho in Brazil’s third and final change in regulation.
70min: Meunier earns a yellow and he will miss the next game for Belgium. Courtois makes his latest save, this one an easy one from Douglas Costa’s long-range shot.
62min: Hazard just misses the far post after another counter led by KDB and started by some strong work from Chadli against Fernandinho. At the other end, Courtois makes a good save on Douglas Costa and the rebound is cleared before Paulinho can get a foot to it.
58min: Brazil make second change, Douglas Costa on for Gabriel Jesus.
56min: Gabriel Jesus destroys the soul of Vertonghen, then gets cleaned out by Kompany. No call; VAR agrees.
55min: It’s all Brazil at the moment, as Courtois saves from Gabriel Jesus.
53min: Fellaini appears to foul Neymar in the area, but it turns out to be an egregious dive. Good eyes by the referee, though no card then for diving is odd.
51min: Marcelo dances on the left and works a great cross, but no one’s home to tap it in with Courtois beaten.
49min: Kompany wins the ball from Neymar, finds De Bruyne who finds Lukaku steaming up the right side. But Miranda stands tall and prevents a shot with some great defending.
47min: Alderweireld gets the first booking of the day for a tactical foul on Paulinho breaking through the middle.
HALF-TIME: Willian’s day is done as he’s hooked in favor of Roberto Firmino. The Chelsea winger was rather anonymous in the first-half.
45+1min: HALF-TIME! Belgium looking good.
45min: Half-hearted penalty shout (Meunier on Neymar) ends latest Brazil effort to get on the scoresheet. Belgium looking increasingly comfortable. Neymar flagged offside, though his shot was deflected anyway.
41min: KDB wins a free kick, Alisson pushes it over the bar for a corner. Alisson then saves Lukaku’s flicked finish.
39min: Hazard’s turn to run the counter. He beats three, but the combination with KDB & Lukaku doesn’t quite come off. Belgium recycle the ball through Meunier and keep possession.
36min: Gabriel Jesus loses Kompany, but he can’t quite reach the header well enough and it flies wide. Courtois then saves an own goal from Meunier and a long-shot from Coutinho.
31min: But from a corner, it’s Belgium who double their lead! Lukaku storms forward, finds De Bruyne, who wallops it in from 20 yards. Tremendous shot!
30min: Brazil back on top, looking for the equalizer, but Belgium managing to keep them out.
26min: Marcelo unleashes one, Courtois saves and the defense mops up the rebound. At the other end, Hazard and KDB combine again, but the latter’s cross is acrobatically headed clear.
23min: Willian’s cross is cleared and KDB runs the counter. Goes right to Lukaku, who beats one man but the second clears for a corner. KDB takes, way long.
21min: Hazard and KDB combine to create space in the middle; Hazard runs at goal, goes wide to Meunier, but his low cross is cleared.
19min: Brazil fashion a chance, but Courtois easily gathers Neymar’s long-range effort.
18min: Belgium counter after Fellaini wins the ball from Neymar, but Chadli’s cross is well cleared.
15min: Brazil look for an immediate answer, but Courtois parries a cross then clears a goalmouth scramble.
13min: Fellaini wastes a tremendous De Bruyne pass with a tremendously, hilariously bad shot .. but deflection gives Belgium a corner. Chadli takes and Fernandinho heads into the back of his own net! Oopsies.
10min: Brazil come forward again, Marcelo’s cross causes all sorts of havoc before Alderweireld clears for a corner. Willian takes, Paulinho whiffs on his shot when wide open in the middle of the box. Brazil have started well; Belgium looking very shaky at the back.
8min: Thiago Silva hits the post from a corner after Miranda wins the initial header. At the other end, Hazard’s shot is charged down.
6min: Fellaini’s second foul already.
3min: De Bruyne knocks Fernandinho off the ball, but his long shot is watched wide by Alisson. At the other end, Courtois plucks Neymar’s cross out of the air.
KICK-OFF: Brazil get us underway.
The marquee matchup of the quarterfinal round is the showdown between traditional powers Brazil and Belgium’s Golden Generation, led by Chelsea stars Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois and former Chelsea missed opportunities Romelu Lukaku and Kevin De Bruyne. Just imagine how good Belgium could be if all those guys played together at club level, too!
As it stands, Belgium have yet to fully live up to the expectations of their Golden Generation, but this could very well be their year.
Brazil, meanwhile, are Brazil, but thanks to Tite’s methods, have managed to foster a true team that may not have the greatest available parts but is possibly greater than the sum of the ones in it.
Two sides known for their attacking prowess, a spot in the semifinal against France on the line. Both managers have made changes to their midfield for this one, in an attempt to win that battle.
This should be great.
Here we go!
Brazil starting lineup (4-3-3):
Alisson | Marcelo, Miranda, Thiago Silva, Fagner | Philippe Coutinho, Fernandinho, Paulinho | Neymar, Gabriel Jesus, Willian
Substitutes from: Pedro Geromel, Filipe Luis, Douglas Costa, Renato Augusto, Marquinhos, Cassio, Fred, Roberto Firmino, Taison, Ederson
Belgium starting lineup (3-4-3):
Courtois | Vertonghen, Kompany, Alderweireld | Chadli, Fellaini, Witsel, Meunier | E.Hazard, Lukaku, De Bruyne
Substitutes from: Vermaelen, Carrasco, Mignolet, Casteels, Mertens, T.Hazard, Tielemans, Januzaj, Dembele, Boyata, Batshuayi, Dendoncker
Date / Time: Friday, July 6, 2018, 19:00 BST; 2pm EDT
Venue: Kazan Arena, Kazan
Referee: Milorad Mažić (Serbia)
On TV: BBC One (UK); Fox Sports 1, Telemundo (USA); elsewhere
Streaming online: BBC iPlayer (UK); FOX Sports Go, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo; Sling World Cup (USA)