Croatia’s dream World Cup run ignites diaspora in Australia

By Alison Bevege SYDNEY, July 14 : Nothing has united the Croatian diaspora more than qualifying for the country’s first World Cup final, with celebrations among ex-pat communities rivaling the excitement felt in Zagreb. “You’ve got to understand how huge this is,” said Veljko Bosnic, president of the Dalmacija Sydney Croatian Club in Australia, home […]

Mandzukic sends Croatia into first World Cup final

By Mitch Phillips MOSCOW, July 11 : Mario Mandzukic scored in the 109th minute as Croatia came from behind to beat England 2-1 after extra time on Wednesday and reach their first World Cup final, where they will face France on Sunday, and send the Balkan nation into raptures. England, appearing in their first semi-final […]

Umtiti header sends France into World Cup final

By Simon Evans ST PETERSBURG, July 10 : Samuel Umtiti’s 51st-minute header sent an impressive France into the World Cup final with a 1-0 win over Belgium in an absorbing first semi-final on Tuesday. Didier Deschamps’ side will face England or Croatia in Moscow on Sunday as the French look to lift the trophy for […]

Swiss reach last 16, where Sweden await

By Andrew Cawthorne NIZNHY NOVGOROD, Russia, Jun 27 : Switzerland kept politics off the field and Costa Rica broke their World Cup duck in a thrilling 2-2 draw on Wednesday that saw the Europeans through to the next round of the World Cup where they will face Sweden. Pre-match attention had focussed on Granit Xhaka […]

Brazil outclass Serbia to set up Mexico clash

By Mitch Phillips MOSCOW, Jun 27 : Goals by Paulinho and Thiago Silva steered a much-improved Brazil to a 2-0 victory over a battling but ultimately outclassed Serbia on Wednesday and into a World Cup second-round meeting with Mexico. The win, combined with Switzerland’s 2-2 draw with Costa Rica, meant Brazil finished top of Group […]

Win over England not priority, says Martinez

By Steve Keating KALININGRAD, Russia, Jun 27 : One of sport’s old adages is “winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing” but not for Belgium coach Roberto Martinez, at least not when his team take on England in their final World Cup round-robin match to decide top spot in Group G. Normally a battle between […]