The eyes of every world football fan remained stuck on one country over the past month or so. Russia, the host of the 2018 Football world cup has given all the excitement and shocks that was expected, and some more. The defending champions Germany were knocked out, so were Argentina and Brazil, generally thought to be two of the strongest sides. Surprisingly England, Croatia, France and Belgium stayed in the race for the coveted cup and yesterday on 10th July, France became the first country to enter the finals of the 2018 World Cup. A header by Samuel Umtiti, the Barcelona defender, from a corner kick taken by Antoine Griezmann sealed their spot in the World Cup finals. The French were jubilant and rightfully so, but their Italian neighbours were celebrating too. Italy’s celebration had nothing to do with France’s advancement in the finals though, as they celebrated the news of Cristiano Ronaldo’s transfer to Italian club Juventus being finalised yesterday.
The Portugese national who is among the greatest footballers of all time, is all set to join the Serie A side for a whopping 105 Million Euros. Cristiano Ronaldo or CR7 as he is usually called, has enjoyed nine successful seasons at Real Madrid, having won four Champions League titles playing for the Spanish club. His stint at Real Madrid was fulfilling for him personally as he managed to win four Golden Balls and three Gold Boots along with the coveted Ballon D’Or five times. Ronaldo’s transfer to Juventus is also noteworthy considering Real Madrid had defeated the Italian side in Champions League final 4-1. Even this year Juventus had been knocked out in the quarterfinals by Real Madrid. The Italians believe Ronaldo is the difference and the secret ingredient they have been lacking in their bid to clinch a Champions League trophy. The staggering 99.2 pound transfer money paid by the Italian club makes CR7 the 4th most expensive player of all time after Brazilian forward Neymar, French forward Kylian Mbappe and Brazilian midfielder Philipe Coutinho. CR7 at 33 is the oldest player amongst all of them and the huge transfer fees points towards the desperation of Juventus to get Cristiano to Italy.
France’s entry into the finals of the World Cup and the transfer of Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus have made the day historic for the two countries. The French with Mbappe, Antoine Griezmann and Olivier Giroud as attackers are looking menacing. Belgium’s strong team of Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku and Kevin De Bruyne could not save them from a loss at the hands of the French. Meanwhile, England and Croatia are set to fight it out today for the chance to challenge France in the finals. This World Cup will definitely have a surprise ending if the proceedings till date are taken as a sign of things to come. As for the semi finals between England and Croatia today, make sure you have enough snacks to last you 90 + 5 minutes. It will be worth its weight in gold, and so will the soon upcoming finals be.
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