Samba Sunrise: Brazil progress, but at what cost?
What they say
"The cool Germans edged a tight, technical battle against a stubborn France in the Rio heat. This was lacking the joy and flair we'd grown used to seeing from the South American teams. It was all business. Match Entertainment Value: 6/10"
FFT's Jason Chua, France 0 Germany 1
"Mental, mental game. Played at a relentless pace and intensity, it was high-quality end-to-end stuff for 95 minutes. There was even a Brazilian fan wearing a carved watermelon head! David Luiz, the playstation footballer running with reckless abandon, epitomised everything about this game. Match Entertainment Value: 9/10"
FFT's Dominic Neo, Brazil 2 Colombia 1
Joachim Low has challenged Germany to "take the next step" after a battling 1-0 win over France secured a World Cup semi-final berth.
"In the last four World Cups we've reached the semi-finals," Low said. "That is a good achievement. We now need to take the next step."
Outgoing goalkeeper Mickael Landreau has predicted that France will build on their showing at the World Cup. "There's been a big investment in terms of work, the squad and on a human level, which is why the feeling right now is one of frustration and disappointment," he said.
"We've got Euro 2016 coming, and the experience we've picked up here is going to stand us in good stead."
Colombia defender Juan Zuniga has defended the tackle that has ended Brazil star Neymar's World Cup. "It was a normal move. I never meant to hurt a player," he said.
"I was on the field, playing for the shirt from my country, not with the intent to injure. I was just defending my shirt."
Former Netherlands international Edgar Davids has questioned the widespread praise of Brazil 2014, claiming the tournament is "a bit mediocre". Davids also questioned Netherlands' performance so far in Brazil, despite the fact Louis van Gaal's team have won all four matches.
Costa Rica coach Jorge Luis Pinto feels the diving of Arjen Robben is his biggest concern ahead of a last-eight clash with the Netherlands. While promising that his Costa Rica side will try their hardest to reach the last four, Pinto conceded Robben's theatrics are a concern.
Chile coach Jorge Sampaoli will remain in charge of the South American side until at least the 2015 Copa America. "I have a contractual agreement on top of my word to carry on after Copa America," he said. "This is an important tournament which Chile has never won and we're hosts."
AZ striker Aron Johannsson is to undergo surgery on his ankle after his World Cup campaign with the United States came to an end. The 23-year-old featured in the opening match - a 2-1 win over Ghana - as a first-half substitute for the injured Jozy Altidore.
Marc Wilmots insists Belgium will not alter their style of football against Argentina in Sunday's World Cup quarter-final. Despite Argentina's attack being led by star forward Lionel Messi, the head coach has urged his side to stick with the principles that have taken them to this point.
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