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Surprise! 2018 World Cup Final Guaranteed to Feature at Least One Underdog

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As the remaining teams in the 2018 FIFA World Cup continue to battle for a place in the quarter finals, at least one underdog will feature in the tournament’s final.

With Spain knocked out of the World Cup by a resilient and inspired performance by Russian goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev and the wider squad, either Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, Croatia, England, or Colombia will play in the final, due to the way the groups were drawn and how the group stages panned out.

READ MORE: Complacency & Mistakes: Examining Spain’s Lackluster 2018 World Cup Performance

The early removal of other football heavyweights from the tournament, such as Germany and Argentina, also played a role in guaranteeing that at least one underdog will reach the final.

None of the aforementioned list of teams were tipped as serious title contenders prior to the start of the tournament, and many have already exceeded expectations.

Russia has won three out of the four matches it has played so far in the 2018 World Cup, losing only one to Uruguay after one of the team’s defender was sent off. The squad’s performance has been encouraging, with comfortable victories in their first two matches against Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Other teams on this side of the draw that have also looked promising include England, which has impressed Brits and boosted domestic support. Despite its squad being packed with Premier League players, the team has had little success in recent years, and wasn’t tipped to have a chance of lifting the trophy ahead of the tournament.

Colombia and Switzerland have also had spells of brilliance, and will face England and Sweden to compete for a place in the quarter finals.

On the other side of the draw, France, Brazil and Belgium are still in, and could make it to the final and play against one of the underdog teams.

READ MORE: Next Stop Quarterfinals: Goals by Neymar, Firmino Help Brazil Defeat Mexico

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underdog, football, 2018 FIFA World Cup, Russian National Football Team, FIFA, Moscow, Russia, Colombia, England, Spain
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