Moscow (AFP) – AFP Sport picks out some of the best quotes at the World Cup:
“Professional. Clinical. Bring on Belgium and the knockout rounds.”
— England captain Harry Kane on Twitter after his hat-trick in a 6-1 thrashing of Panama took him to the top of the World Cup goalscoring charts.
“What a performance today from all the boys. Well done @HKane on the hat-trick. Time to go again v Belgium.”
— England defender Kieran Trippier on Twitter.
“You can’t do that, football has a strange knack of punishing you when you don’t treat things professionally and in the right manner.”
— Belgium coach Roberto Martinez dismisses suggestions his team could take it easy in their last Group G match against England if finishing second means they play an “easier” opponent in the round of 16.
“This is crazy ??!! A Tie ??! Congrats Japan! Congrats Senegal!”
— American actress Reese Witherspoon comes to terms with the concept of a group-stage draw.
“Some of the German leaders on the team (bench) celebrated by running in our direction and rubbing it into our faces by making gestures and that got me really annoyed and angry.”
— Sweden coach Janne Andersson takes exception to the German coaching staff’s antics after Toni Kroos’ sensational 95th-minute goal gave the defending champions a 2-1 win and tournament lifeline.
“I’ve been telling (players) they need to put on five kilograms and grow five centimeters, but they couldn’t do that and we just have to figure out something else.”
— Japan coach Akira Nishino jokes about his players’ physiques.
“It’s Jamie Vardy here from Vardy News. Just how big is the diameter of your head?”
— England’s Jamie Vardy gatecrashes a Harry Maguire interview with British journalists to deliver a fake question and wind up his Leicester City team-mate, who he has nicknamed “Slabhead” because he says the defender has an unusually large cranium.
“I will be very happy if I participate and set the record. But it is not certain.”
— Egypt’s 45-year-old keepr Essam El Hadary on the prospect of becoming the oldest player ever at a World Cup against Saudi Arabia on Monday.