World Cup 2018: Colombia vs England - 3 key battles to watch out for
Match 56 of the 2018 World Cup will see Colombia facing off against England in the final match of the RO16 stage. The winners will face one of Sweden/Switzerland in the quarters, which will be decided in the previous game.
After losing out in the final group stage game against Belgium, England moved to a potentially easier bracket en route to the final. Gareth Southgate will play a fully-rested full strength squad here and England will hope to oust their knockout jinxes from the past.
For Colombia, James Rodriguez's fitness is a cause of great concern after his brilliant showing against Poland. He limped off during the win against Senegal, and might not feature in the starting XI.
There are several key battles that will affect the final outcome of the game depending on how they turn out. Here's a look at 3 of them:
#1 Harry Kane vs Yerry Mina
In the battle of the top-scorers for both sides, Harry Kane will have to hope that the crosses from Trippier manage to find their way past the enormous frame of Yerry Mina if he wants to knock them into the back of the net.
Kane has scored 5 goals so far in the tournament - leading the Golden Boot race at the moment - and sat out the third group game and will be fit and raring to go. He was solely responsible for England's last-gasp win against Tunisia and has proved himself worthy of the adulation that follows him around.
Yerry Mina has gone under the radar of several fans after his non-existent season with Barcelona, but his lethality in the air is not something to be missed. After having scored 2 goals so far with his 195 cms tall figure, he might be the one the English defenders have to keep an eye on during corners.
As England do not have a lot of creative strength from the midfield, Kane might have to drop a little deep to accommodate his build-up play. Assuming Southgate sticks with playing Kane and no Vardy beside him, it might be time for Sterling as well to step up his game.