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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 September 2018

Extra Time podcast: Comeback kings Croatia to come up short against Mbappe and France in the World Cup final

Steve Luckings and Graham Caygill offer their thoughts and analysis, and give their predictions on who will win the the 2018 World Cup final as well as the third place play-off between Belgium and England

France's Kylian Mbappe has scored three goals en route to the World Cup final. Reuters
France's Kylian Mbappe has scored three goals en route to the World Cup final. Reuters

And then there were two. Croatia, the comeback kings, will face France in the final of the 2018 World Cup after overcoming England and Belgium respectively.

In this Extra Time podcast, Steve Luckings and Graham Caygill offer their thoughts and analysis, and give their predictions on who will win the remaining two matches at the 2018 World Cup.

Listen below, and subscribe for free to Extra Time on Apple Podcasts.

France, world champions in 1998, contest their third World Cup final, while Croatia, population four million, are bidding to win the tournament for the first time.

Zlatko Dalic, less than 10 months into the Croatia job, will pit his wits against France’s Didier Deschamps, who is bidding to join Mario Zagallo and Franz Beckenbauer as the only men to have lifted the World Cup as both players and managers.

The stage would seem to be set for Kylian Mbappe. The teenage striker showed against Belgium why many have tipped him as a future Ballon d’Or winner. But Croatia have already proved at this tournament they care little for reputations, and in Luka Modric and Ivan Rakitic, have two world-class midfielders who will look to impose their influence at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium.

Before that, Belgium, arguably the most entertaining side in Russia throughout the tournament, take on England in the third-place play-off.

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Read more:

Richard Jolly: Handling expectation the next test for Gareth Southgate's England

Kyle Walker: England's World Cup performances have brought the nation together

Gareth Southgate 'proud' of England progress despite World Cup semi-final defeat

England player ratings as Gareth Southgate's side beaten in semi-final by Croatia

World Cup 2018 final guide and predictions: Mbappe to inspire France to victory

Zlatko Dalic: Croatia will be ready for France in the World Cup final

Imperious France have all the tools to deliver a second World Cup trophy

France to use Euro 2016 heartache to spur them on to World Cup glory, says Deschamps

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