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Arsenal at the knockout stage of the 2018 FIFA World Cup: when to watch

Details on the remaining five Arsenal players at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

England v Belgium: Group G - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Photo by Alex Morton/Getty Images

Don’t look now, but seventy-five percent of the World Cup is over, with 48 matches of 64 having been played. We’re now in the knockout stage, starting on Saturday, with France against Argentina, followed by Portugal against Uruguay. While the latter match may hold some Arsenal interest, Lucas Torreira is not officially an Arsenal player, and so in the spirit of Not Jinxing, he won’t be included on this list. Here are the players who will be involved, all of whom are in the bottom half of the draw:

Nacho Monreal, Spain

Monreal hasn’t played a single minute at the World Cup, with Jordi Alba playing all three games for Spain. That’ll likely continue unless Alba gets injured, or Monreal gets used as a late sub. Spain play Russia, and should beat the hosts, who were easily dispatched by Uruguay 3-0. The winner plays either Croatia or Denmark, and then one of Colombia, England, Sweden or Switzerland.

Spain v Russia, Sunday July 1, 3 PM BST/10 AM EDT/7 AM PDT

Granit Xhaka and Stephan Lichtsteiner, Switzerland

Xhaka and Lichtsteiner played all 3 games in the Group, but each had their own disciplinary issues. Xhaka, Xherdan Shaqiri and Lichtsteiner were all investigated for making an eagle symbol—the symbol of Albania—following Xhaka and Shaqiri’s goals in the 2-1 win over Serbia. All three players were spared suspension, but Lichtsteiner will be banned against Sweden, having picked up two yellow cards. Switzerland are favourites against Sweden, but Sweden did well to come out of a difficult group, and were unlucky in defeat against Germany. The contest will be tight: both sides are defensively solid. The winner plays Colombia or England in the quarter-final.

Switzerland v Sweden, Tuesday July 3, 3 PM BST/10 AM EDT/7 AM PDT

Danny Welbeck, England

Welbeck came on as a substitute against Belgium, and had a goal-bound shot cleared off the line by Marouane Fellaini. He then lost his bearings on a quick cross from Danny Rose. Welbeck isn’t going to start ahead of Harry Kane, and Marcus Rashford and Jamie Vardy have been preferred as substitutes, though neither have looked great. England will hope that the starting XI is good enough that Welbeck won’t be needed to make an impact, though the prospect of Welbeck facing David Ospina with a place in the quarter-finals on the line is hilarious.

England face Colombia on their glorious quest to bring football home, having plotted their route to the semi-final with a smart loss to Belgium. Alternatively, should Colombia beat England, then Gareth Southgate is a dunderhead.

Colombia v England, Tuesday July 3, 7 PM BST/2 PM EDT/11 AM PDT

David Ospina

David Ospina kept two clean-sheets, and inspired confidence in goal for Colombia. I know, it’s shocking. Thankfully, Ospina went down injured after almost every save, providing some normalcy. Against England, he might be Colombia’s weak-link, given England’s proficiency at set pieces, and Ospina’s, well, we’ve seen him at set pieces for Arsenal. Colombia, though, easily have the ability to beat England and advance to the quarter-finals, though a lot depends if Ospina’s former brother-in-law, James Rodriguez, is fit. I wonder if that ever gets a little weird. Ospina may not be an Arsenal player for much longer, given Petr Cech got the #1 shirt, and Arsenal signed Bernd Leno.

Colombia v England, Tuesday July 3, 7 PM BST/2 PM EDT/11 AM PDT