england v colombia analysis from michael cox

quarterfinal matches

I have mentioned a little competition I'm in ... seven of us in a complicated prediction game where I admittedly don't really understand how the scoring is done. I am currently in second place ... I did well in the Round of 16. You get points for picking winners, picking scorelines, picking goal scorers, and in the knockout phase, how long the match goes (90/120/PK). I am first in picking winners, I am tied for first in scorelines, and I am first in 90/120/PK. But I stink at picking goal scorers ... the only reason I'm 6th instead of last is that one person forgot to pick goal scorers for the group stage.

So when you see me predict a winner, I might actually know something. But if you see me predict who will score goals, ignore me.

Thus, I offer my predictions for the next round.

Uruguay-France. I predict it will go to penalties after a 1-1 draw, goals by Suárez and Mbappé. France will win the shootout.

Brazil-Belgium. Brazil, 2-1, in regulation 90 minutes. Goals by Neymar and Firmino for Brazil and Lukaku for Belgium.

Sweden-England. England, 2-1, in regulation time. Goals by Kane and Lingard for England and Toivonen for Sweden.

Russia-Croatia. Croatia to win, 2-1, in 120 minutes. Goals by Rakitic and Mandzukic for Croatia and Golovin for Russia.