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Stoke City (A) Wed 4 Mar 2015, 19:45, Barclays Premier League

by Matthew Gamble @efc_mattgamble

What happened last night?

The identity of the two teams to play in the first semi-final was confirmed as Germany beat France and Brazil defeated Colombia.

Mats Hummels scored the only goal for the Germans while Thiago Silva and a stunning David Luiz free-kick put Brazil 2-0 up against their South American neighbours before James Rodriguez’s penalty ensured a tense finish.

Who caught the eye?

Hummels was Germany’s standout performer, backing up his early headed goal with a watertight defensive performance to keep the French at bay.

In the second game, David Luiz’s free-kick was an astounding strike and the £50m PSG signing also turned in a wholehearted display in defence. We must make mention of Colombia talisman Rodriguez who was the victim of some agricultural Brazil challenges but still allowed his class to show with some deft passing and a nerveless penalty.

What’s happening today?

The second two quarter finals. First, Argentina take on Belgium before Holland face the competition’s surprise package Costa Rica.

Who should I be looking out for today?

Kevin Mirallas of course. The Everton man helped swing the game of the tournament in Belgium’s favour in the last 16 win over USA earlier this week.

Former Blues loanee Romelu Lukaku also had a major impact after coming off the bench.

Argentina are likely to continue to rely on Lionel Messi for their spark.

In the other game, Holland’s Arjen Robben has been their key player, while neutrals will surely be hoping Costa Rica can spring another upset with their industrious and enterprising team play.

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