Sunday 25 August 2019

World Cup player watch: No rest for the wicked

The latest on what the players at the World Cup have been up to as they prepare for the knockout stages.

England midfielder Dele Alli is hoping to be fit for the last 16 clash with Colombia on Tuesday (Tim Goode/PA)
England midfielder Dele Alli is hoping to be fit for the last 16 clash with Colombia on Tuesday (Tim Goode/PA)

By Josh Luckhurst, Press Association Sport

It was a rare rest day in Russia as the remaining 16 teams prepare for their first knockout matches.

No games were played on Friday and fans will have to wait until France take on Argentina on Saturday afternoon to start proceedings, before Uruguay face Portugal later that day.

However, before all that gets under way, players have taken to social media with many of them evaluating their nation’s performance in the competition so far.

England will have to wait until Tuesday evening to play their last-16 tie with Colombia but midfielder Dele Alli, who has been absent since the first group game against Tunisia with a thigh injury, has been putting in the hard yards to prove his fitness on Friday morning.

Alli’s team-mates are optimistic about their chances of progressing in the tournament despite being on the receiving end of a 1-0 defeat to Belgium in the final Group G match on Thursday.

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👶🏼 💭

A post shared by Eric Dier (@ericdier15) on

Brazil superstar Neymar showed off his ball-juggling skills during training – and it’s fair to say they are pretty impressive.

But Neymar is not the only player to show off their talents in Friday training, with Spain captain Sergio Ramos proving he is not just a rugged centre-back.

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🤹🏼‍♂⚽😜 #VamosEspaña 🇪🇸

A post shared by Sergio Ramos (@sergioramos) on

And finally, Thomas Vermaelen showed the aftermath of Belgium’s clash with England.

PA Media

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