Today might just be the day Samuel Umtiti becomes a World Cup semifinals hero in France after heading home the opening goal to put Les Bleus ahead of Belgium in Tuesday’s final-four clash in St. Petersburg, Russia.
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For 50 minutes, the Western European neighbors thrilled and excited, but each and every attacking advanced proved futile, with most of the thanks and/or blame going to world-class goalkeepers Hugo Lloris and Thibaut Courtois.
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Then, in the 51st minute, Umtiti bested Marouane Fellaini, a noted aerial specialist himself, to get his head to Antoine Griezmann’s corner kick. Courtois couldn’t react quick enough to cover his near post, and France went 1-0 ahead.