The best games from the 2018 World Cup

The 2018 World Cup has thrown up plenty of shock results and thrilling games so far.

Here, FP looks at five of the top matches from the summer tournament in Russia.

Belgium 3 Japan 2

England v Belgium – FIFA World Cup 2018 – Group G – Kaliningrad Stadium
Belgium’s Nacer Chadli scored the late winner against Japan (Aaron Chown/PA)

The Red Devils launched a thrilling second-half comeback just as it looked like Japan were going to pull off a second-round shock. Two goals in four minutes after the break from Genki Haraguchi and Takashi Inui put Japan 2-0 ahead but Jan Vertonghen and Marouane Fellaini levelled. Then, in the final minute of stoppage time, Belgium broke from a Japan corner and Nacer Chadli slotted in to complete a remarkable revival.

Portugal 3 Spain 3

2018 World Cup Package
Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hat-trick against Spain (Nick Potts/PA)

Cristiano Ronaldo earned Portugal a last-gasp point against Spain in Group B when he completed a hat-trick with a stunning free-kick. The Real Madrid forward netted in the 88th minute, having twice put Portugal ahead. Diego Costa twice equalised before Nacho’s thunderbolt put Spain ahead for the first time – but Ronaldo had the last word.

France 4 Argentina 3

France v Republic of Ireland – International Friendly – Stade de France
Kylian Mbappe starred for France against Argentina (Adam Davy/PA)

A World Cup classic in the second round as Argentina’s roller-coaster campaign ended in thrilling style. Kylian Mbappe outshone Lionel Messi to score twice and send France into the quarter-finals, while Benjamin Pavard scored one of the goals of the tournament. Antoine Griezmann’s penalty opened the scoring and goals from Angel di Maria, Gabriel Mercado and Sergio Aguero could not stop Argentina’s exit.

South Korea 2 Germany 0

Tottenham's Son Heung-Min helped dump Germany out
Tottenham’s Son Heung-Min helped dump Germany out (Michael Probst/AP)

Germany became the third straight defending champions to exit at the group stage after a shock late defeat. VAR played a role as it allowed Kim Young-gwon’s 92nd-minute goal to stand after it was initially ruled out for offside.
Son Heung-Min then scored as Manuel Neuer went walkabout, with Germany desperately trying to find a way back but Joachim Low’s men finished bottom of Group F.

Nigeria 1 Argentina 2

Nigeria v Argentina – FIFA World Cup 2018 – Group D – Saint Petersburg Stadium
Argentina’s Marcos Rojo celebrates his late winner against Nigeria (Owen Humphreys/PA)

Nigeria were heading into the last 16 until Marcos Rojo’s late volley sent Argentina through from Group D instead. Jorge Sampaoli’s side appeared to be in a constant state of disarray in Russia before they broke the Super Eagles’ hearts.Needing to win to stand a chance of qualifying, Messi’s excellent finish put them ahead only for Victor Moses’ penalty to put Nigeria in pole position before Rojo’s late show.

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Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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