World Cup Preview – Round of 16 | Sweden v Switzerland – England v Colombia

England’s quest for World Cup glory enters the knockout phase on Tuesday as they face Colombia in Moscow.

The Three Lions may have lost their final group game with Belgium, but with the perceived benefits of finishing second and a better route through to the latter stages, their odds have been cut.

England boss Gareth Southgate has tried to calm expectation levels which are growing.

“It has been 12 years since we’ve won a knockout fixture, so this is a great opportunity for this team to go further than more experienced ones have before. I think they’re relishing that chance,” he said.

“We have been in this position before, many times over the last however many years, so it’s pointless thinking about what might happen after the game. We have to focus on the game.

“If there are teams knocking out Spain and Germany they have to be respected, there are many countries with different generations of players coming through, and we feel we’re one of those countries.”

Colombia boss Jose Pekerman knows the danger of England, but he is confident they can win.

“I definitely think England have what it takes to do well, but it will be a match in which Colombia is going to be confident of playing at a high level and getting a good result,” he said.

“We know that any team that reaches the last 16 is good, we are talking about the best 16 teams in the world.

“Obviously England can have a good day or an even better day. England is a young team, has a lot of harmony and you can tell they have a lot of faith in themselves.

“Now a different kind of match is heading our way, these will be completely full-on, to the death matches, win or you are out. These are extreme situations.”

Sweden meet Switzerland in St Petersburg, and there appears to be little to separate the two European nations.

Sweden’s head coach Janne Andersson is hoping his can keep achieving their ‘personal bests’.

“It’s a situation again where we have to reach our personal best, I know I keep on repeating it but I think it’s a very good description on what is needed from us both as individuals and as a team. We need to reach our absolute highest level, then we will have the chance to beat Switzerland as well.”

Swiss coach Vladimir Petkovic comes into the game in confident mood.

“We got ourselves into trouble in the first three games. We want to control the game from the beginning. We will be hungry like our fans who have travelled to St. Petersburg. It seems that we have triggered something in Switzerland.”

See below for a preview on the games, including predictions from former England and Tottenham midfielder Andy Gray and our own Football Insider Graeme Bailey and bet365’s Steve Freeth.

Sweden 15:00 Switzerland
St Petersburg Arena, St Petersburg

Sweden: Robin Olsen; Mikael Lustig, Victor Lindelöf, Andreas Granqvist, Ludwig Augustinsson; Viktor Claesson, Gustav Svensson, Albin Ekdal, Emil Forsberg; Marcus Berg, Ola Toivonen

Switzerland: Yann Sommer; Michael Lang, Johan Djourou, Manuel Akanji, Ricardo Rodriguez; Valon Behrami, Granit Xhaka; Xherdan Shaqiri, Blerim Dzemaili, Steven Zuber; Josip Drmic

KEY FACT: Sweden and Switzerland have met 28 times before, but never at a World Cup
Match odds from bet365: SWEDEN 21/10 DRAW 2/1 SWITZERLAND 17/10
bet365 Pick: Match to go to penalties @4/1
ANDY SAYS: Switzerland win this for me, I see them getting by Sweden with a bit more quality…0-2
GRAEME SAYS: A tough call certainly, could go to extra-time but I think Sweden might just edge it…1-0
FOOTBALLIndex – One to follow: Emil Forsberg – showing up very well for Sweden, a quality performer

England 19:00 Colombia
Spartak Stadium, Moscow

David Ospina; Santiago Arias, Davinson Sanchez, Yerry Mina, Johan Mojica; Carlos Sanchez, Mateus Uribe; Juan Cuadrado, Juan Quintero, Luis Muriel; Falcao

England: Jordan Pickford; Kyle Walker, John Stones, Harry Maguire; Kieran Trippier, Dele, Jordan Henderson, Jesse Lingard, Ashley Young; Raheem Sterling, Harry Kane

KEY FACT: Harry Kane is the top-scorer in the World Cup following the group stages
Match odds from bet365: COLOMBIA 3/1 DRAW 11/5 ENGLAND 23/20
bet365 Pick: England win @23/20
ANDY SAYS: I don’t see this being easy at all but I am backing England to get through…1-2
GRAEME SAYS: Close game, we could see penalties but we will see goals – I think England will just do it…2-3
FOOTBALLIndex – One to follow: Harry Kane – has led England by example and should continue his good form

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