FIFA 2018: France wins WC trophy; Croatia wins hearts; Putin gets the umbrella


France won a thrilling Final against Croatia 4-2 to be crowned the FIFA World Cup Russia 2018 champions. The Final match was everything that football fans were hoping for and more. There were a few moments during the match that jolted viewers and left them asking ‘What was that?’ 

The very first goal of the match – an own goal scored by Croatia’s Mario Mandzukic in the 18th minute – left many baffled, but obviously sent the French into raptures. Ivan Perisic kept Croatia’s hopes high when he scored the equaliser 10 minutes later in the 28th minute. 

France got the perfect chance to surge ahead when Antoine Griezmann’s corner kick saw the ball hit Ivan Perisic’s hand and the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) ruled handball. Thus a penalty kick was awarded to France and Griezmann made no mistake, giving France a 4-2 lead. 

Riding that momentum, midfielder Paul Pogba and forward Kylian Mbappe capped two more goals and cemented France’s lead to 4-1. Following the footsteps of Pele himself, Mbappe became only the 2nd teenager to score the last goal for his team in the World Cup finals. 

But Croatia was not done yet, as in another ‘What was that?’ moment, Mario Mandzukic made up for his own goal mistake and nudged the ball into the English goal when goalkeeper Hugo Lloris made an error and lost his grip on the ball. 

Soon it was all over for the spirited Croatians, the first timers in a FIFA World Cup Finals. There was some consolation for Croatia when Luka Modric was awarded the Golden Ball. 

A sudden downpour during the awards ceremony added to the atmosphere and as Twitteratis joked, Vladimir Putin’s umbrella power play almost stole the World Cup trophy’s thunder. 

Along with the glittering trophy, there were more awards in store for France. Kylian Mbappe was adjudged FIFA Young Player. Antoine Griezmann was declared Man of the Match (Final). Griezmann was also awarded the Silver Boot for assisting in 4 goals scored as well as the Bronze Ball. France’s coach Didier Deschamps was one happy man, becoming only the third person ever to take home the WC trophy both as a player and as a coach. 

England’s Harry Kane walked away with the Golden Boot, scoring the highest number of goals this World Cup – a total of 6 goals. 

Belgium’s goalkeeper won the Golden Glove award. 

As the official mobile and internet broadcaster for the FIFA World Cup 2018, SonyLIV was the constant companion of football fans during the month-long tournament. To cater to the widest possible range of viewers, SonyLIV brought the match through six simultaneous audio feeds – Hindi, Bengali, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, and English. 

The Match Centre on SonyLIV allowed viewers to see live scores, player positions, team data, match statistics and live commentary. For a more engaging experience, users could set reminders or view the entire schedule, while the points table gave a quick update on the standings, scores, etc. 

Additionally, SonyLIV also created a fan-zone on the second screen that users could access on their mobile phones or tablets and experience features like match predictions, emotion meter, polls, and contests, even as they watched the game in real-time. Other features included viewing missed games with snippets and clips of key moments from every match along with highlights.


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