World Cup 2018 TV Schedule, Live-Stream Info for Quarter-Finals, Upcoming GamesJuly 4, 2018
Favourites Brazil will be in action on the first day of the quarter-finals at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia on Friday. The Selecao take on Belgium in Kazan after Uruguay meet France at Nizhny Novgorod.
Saturday will see Sweden contest England in Samara before the hosts entertain unbeaten Croatia at the Fisht Stadium in Sochi.
Friday, July 6
- Uruguay vs. France, 5 p.m. local time (3 p.m. BST/10 a.m. ET): ITV 1/Fox Sports 1
- Brazil vs. Belgium, 9 p.m. local time (7 p.m. BST/2 p.m. ET): BBC One/Fox Sports 1
Saturday, July 7
- Sweden vs. England, 6 p.m. local time (3 p.m. BST/10 a.m. ET): BBC One/Fox
- Russia vs. Croatia, 9 p.m. local time (7 p.m. BST/2 p.m. ET): ITV 1/Fox
Live-streaming links: BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, Fox Soccer MatchPass, fuboTV
Brazil's meeting with Belgium should guarantee goals on Friday evening. The Red Devils have scored 12 times through four matches, including three in their last game, a stunning comeback to beat Japan on Monday.
Belgium have the attacking resources to frighten any defence, even against a Brazil back line breached just once since the start of the tournament. Yet Selecao coach Tite should still be concerned about Casemiro's suspension.
The Real Madrid holding midfielder picked up a booking during the win over Mexico in the round of 16. His ability to screen the back four with physicality and intelligent positioning will be missed.
Casemiro's absence could mean more space for Belgium attacking midfielders Kevin De Bruyne and Eden Hazard to exploit.
At the other end, the Red Devils will be chiefly concerned with subduing Neymar. Brazil's star forward has already helped himself to a pair of goals in Russia, while also acting as his nation's creative fulcrum:
If Belgium can stay strong at the back early on, something they were unable to do when falling behind 2-0 to Japan, they have the players to stun Brazil.
However, the Selecao have been solid so far, and they should keep the game close long enough for Neymar to eventually decide things.
The question for Uruguay will be can their aggressive defence keep France forward Kylian Mbappe under wraps?. Pace defines the precocious 19-year-old's game and helped him score twice and win a penalty during the 4-3 win over Argentina in the last 16.
It was a breakout performance from a talented youngster capable of dominating the world stage for years to come:
Uruguay's answer will be the intimidating central-defensive pairing of Diego Godin and Jose Gimenez. The duo have taken their form for Atletico Madrid into the tournament to produce some uncompromising displays.
Like Brazil, La Celeste have only conceded once, and they have yet to be breached from open play. It's a record putting the onus on the France midfield to prove it has the creative nous to unlock a stubborn rearguard.
Without sufficient service, Mbappe will struggle to make an impact against Godin and Co.
Breaking down a stubborn defence is the challenge Sweden will set England. The former have kept three clean sheets in four matches, including against Switzerland in the last round on Tuesday.
Fortunately, England have enough pace and power up top to feel confident about scoring at the Samara Arena. Harry Kane is fine form, having added his sixth goal of the tournament from the penalty spot in normal time during Tuesday's win over Colombia:
Aside from Kane, the pace of Raheem Sterling and Jesse Lingard could stretch an experienced Sweden defence led by 33-year-old skipper Andreas Granqvist.
There's ample pace in Russia's attack, where midfielders Denis Cheryshev and Aleksandr Golovin like to break beyond striker Artem Dzyuba.
Cheryshev and Golovin have been stars, but they may struggle to see much of the ball against a Croatia midfield loaded with astute playmakers.
Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic and Marcelo Brozovic can keep possession as well as any trio. Mateo Kovacic offers the Vatreni another pass-master, while crafty winger Ivan Perisic makes a good target for stylish distribution.
Croatia haven't lost a game at this World Cup and will have confidence, even though the atmosphere in Sochi will surely inspire Golovin and Co.