World Cup Groups 2018: Live Stream, TV Schedule and Bracket Picks for Thursday

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistJune 28, 2018

NIZHNY NOVGOROD, RUSSIA - JUNE 24: Harry Kane of England celebrates scoring his third goal during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group G match between England and Panama at Nizhniy Novgorod Stadium on June 24, 2018 in Nizhniy Novgorod, Russia. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)
Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

England and Belgium go head-to-head on Thursday in the match that will decide who tops Group G at the 2018 World Cup.

It could come down to fair play rules if the two sides draw, though, as they have the same goal difference and have scored the same number of goals in their first two matches. On that front, England have picked up two yellow cards to Belgium's three.

Panama and Tunisia play in Group G's other match, while in Group H, Japan take on Poland and Senegal face off against Colombia.

Here's the schedule, complete with viewing information and picks:

  • 3 p.m. BST/10 a.m. ET Japan vs. Poland (Group H): BBC, Fox (1-1)
  • 3 p.m. BST/10 a.m. ET Senegal vs. Colombia (Group H): BBC, FS1 (2-3)
  • 7 p.m. BST/2 p.m. ET England vs. Belgium (Group G): ITV, FS1 (2-2)
  • 7 p.m. BST/2 p.m. ET Panama vs. Tunisia (Group G): ITV, Fox (0-1)

In the United Kingdom, the action will be streamed via the BBC website or the ITV HubIn the United States, the action will be streamed via Fox Soccer 2GO.


England vs. Belgium

How this match pans out could be a result of the starting XIs.

Belgium fitness coach Richard Evans suggested the Red Devils could make some changes for the clash.

He told BBC Sport

"We don't want to take any risks. It is an ideal opportunity to see some players who haven't played many minutes during the season or possibly during the camp either.

"It is a good chance to give them some match time because obviously everyone is essential when you have such a small squad."

There has been talk suggesting it could be beneficial to finish second in the group to engineer a more favourable draw through the knockout stages, but Sir Clive Woodward—who guided England to Rugby World Cup glory in 2003—believes it's better to maintain momentum:

Sir Clive Woodward @CliveWoodward

World Cups are all about momentum “ winning your next game “ England must prepare and approach this game v Belgium as if it was a knock out match - top the group and then and only then think / talk about your next opponent - this is such an important game to keep momentum going

England will be aiming for three points on Thursday, according to goalkeeper Jordan Pickford:

Sky Sports News @SkySportsNews

WATCH: Jordan Pickford says England are only thinking of winning their final group game against Belgium, despite the fact a second place finish could be more favourable. https://t.co/OoxuohS0zM

Both sides have been clinical going forward, scoring eight goals over two matches against Panama and Tunisia, and they have both shown some vulnerability in conceding twice.

The Three Lions appear to be a more cohesive unit than the Red Devils, but if Belgium name a strong team, they will have more than enough individual talent to cause England problems.


Panama vs. Tunisia

Neither side has picked up a point so far, though Tunisia came close to a draw in their match with England before Harry Kane netted a late winner.

The Eagles of Carthage have also scored three times despite their defeats to the Three Lions and Belgium, showcasing the danger they pose going forward.

Panama look well and truly out of their depth, though. After losing 3-0 to Belgium, they shipped six against England, with five goals coming in the first half.

Football writer Karl Matchett was unimpressed with their poor and often cynical defending:

Karl Matchett @karlmatchett

This is pathetic from Panama. About four penalties there. Ridiculous.

Even Tunisia look a cut above Los Canaleros, and they should be able to edge them out to get a win and leave the World Cup on a high.