The second pair of quarter-finalists are set to be decided at the 2022 Fifa World Cup in Qatar on Sunday, as the Round of 16 continues.
Reigning global champions France must recover from their final group game hiccup as they go up against Poland in an all-European contest.
Then it’s the turn of 2018 semi-finalists England, who topped Group B and now face a Senegal side who progressed despite the absence of leading light Sadio Mane.
World Cup predictions and fixtures for 4 December
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Round of 16: France vs Poland – 17.00
The third knockout tie at the 2022 Fifa World Cup sees European duo France and Poland face off in the Round of 16.
It wouldn’t be Les Bleus at any major tournament without some sort of spanner in the works and they delivered in Qatar by losing their final Group D fixture to Tunisia on Wednesday.
With knockout qualification already in the bag the jeopardy was limited, but if left Didier Deschamps’ charges top of the pool only by virtue of their goal ratio.
It was their first match victims Australia who rose from the dead to qualify alongside them, with Kylian Mbappe and Co having run riot in a 4-1 pool opener.
Mbappe was at it again against Denmark, scoring either side of their crestfallen opponents to seal a 2-1 victory that left their Tunisian contest a rare chance to rest and recuperate ahead of the next phase.
Now they must click back into the higher gear as they continue their bid for back-to-back World Cups.
Standing in the way of the French are Poland, who were put through all sorts of drama on Wednesday night.
Robert Lewandowski’s side lost 2-0 to Argentina in their final Group C match, despite veteran keeper Wojciech Szczesny saving a Lionel Messi penalty.
They were under the cosh for almost the entirety of the second half and were left thanking their lucky stars the needle didn’t move any further on Mexico’s eventual 2-1 win over Saudi Arabia elsewhere.
It meant a draw with the Mexicans and a win over the Saudis, who had earlier sensationally turned over Messi’s men, was enough to take them through to a date with the kings of the world.
Round of 16: England vs Senegal – 21.00
The Round of 16 continues at the 2022 Fifa World Cup in Qatar as England go up against Senegal on Sunday night.
Gareth Southgate’s side are seeking to at least match their semi-final efforts in Russia 2018 and are on course so far, having topped Group B comfortably enough this time around.
A 6-2 demolition job on Iran, whose minds were clearly elsewhere amid political turmoil back home, put them right on the front foot from the off.
It meant a turgid, goalless draw with fellow qualifiers the United States of America failed to put too much of a dent in the Three Lions’ ambitions, even if it did so in their fans’ enthusiasm for a team that came into the tournament in grim form.
And then came their first derby at a World Cup against neighbours Wales.
Marcus Rashford settled the nerves with his second half double, with Phil Foden hot on the heels of his Manchester rival’s opener, to see of the Welsh and keep his nation two points clear of the States at the top of the standings.
That the Senegalese are through at all is to their great credit, having lost star man Sadio Mane to injury on the eve of the competition before also losing their opening match against the Netherlands.
But it was as much a case of spurned opportunities against the Dutch as a poor performance.
And they are the champions of Africa.
Which is why the roaring back of the Lions of Teranga came as little surprise, bumping hopeless hosts Qatar off for a 3-1 victory to right the ship.
It paved the way for a famous 2-1 success against qualification rivals Ecuador on Tuesday, as Kalidou Koulibaly volleyed in the winner 20 minutes from full time to set up a high-stakes clash with the English.