World Cup 2018: Best moments from the tournament on and off the pitch

Olivia Tobin

The 2018 World Cup in Russia will draw to a close today after Croatia and France battle it out for the title.

For the last five weeks, fans across the globe have been glued to the tournament which has been filled with breathtaking goals and wild celebrations.

England fans will remember this as the World Cup where the nation fell back in love with football with Gareth Southgate's men going further than any Three Lions team since 1990.

The Evening Standard has put together some of the best moments from the tournament to look back on.

Senegal's dance moves

The England players were pictured larking around with a rubber chicken during training but the Senegal players’ dance routine stole the show this year.

The team prepared for their crucial clash with Japan by performing as a dance troupe inside the stadium.

Colombian fan helps blind man enjoy game

Hearts melted all across the world when footage of a kind friend’s efforts to help a blind man enjoy the game emerged.

Colombian fan Cesar Daza learned sign language and created hand gestures so his deaf and blind friend Jose Richard Gallego could follow the game.

England player’s unicorn race

The team were pictured recovering (Rex Features)

In one of the celebrated images of the World Cup, grinning England players Harry Maguire, Jordan Pickford and Jesse Lingard were pictured racing blow-up unicorns in a pool as part of one of their recovery sessions.

The images went down a storm with fans with one tweeting: "When England win the World Cup, I’m going to get a tattoo of Jesse riding a unicorn."

Wild celebrations in England

The wild celebrations of England fans across the country were one of the highlights of the World Cup.

'It's Coming Home fever' was in full swing throughout with England fans humorously celebrating every goal and win like they had won the tournament.

Euphoric fans let their love for the side be known after suffering a complete lack of success in major international tournaments for two decades.

Footage from venues including Boxpark Croydon showed huge crowds of supporters jumping up and down and embracing each other as beer flew through the air.

Maradona's two-fingered gesture

Maradona was the star of the show in some matches (AFP/Getty Images)

Legendary footballer Diego Maradona was criticised for a two-fingered celebration in the stands as Argentina took the lead against Nigeria in the World Cup knock-out stages with just minutes to spare.

The 57-year-old displayed some bizarre antics each time Argentina played including dancing wildly, unveiling a flag of himself and falling asleep mid-game.

He blamed his two-fingered gesture on a white wine binge in the VIP box.

Japan fans show exceptional manners

Helping: Japan supporters collect rubbish after the defeat (AFP/Getty Images)

Despite facing a heartbreaking defeat from Belgium, Japanese fans showed incredible manners by helping to clean up after the match.

Fans of the ‘Samurai Blue’ were seen sifting through the aisles picking up rubbish with tears still flowing after their 3-2 loss.

An image of the Japan team's spotless dressing room with a 'thank you' note written in Russian after their World Cup loss also went viral.

Fans help wheelchair-bound man to watch game

One heart-warming moment saw football fans lifting a wheelchair-bound Egyptian man above their shoulders so he could see the game in the World Cup fanzone.

It is reported that Mexican and Colombian fans were behind the kind gesture.

Russian Toon fans run into hero Alan Shearer

A group of Russian Newcastle United fans could not believe their luck when they got to meet Toon Army hero, Alan Shearer.

The group – nicknamed Moscow Mags – got a chance to meet the former Newcastle striker after they repeatedly tweeted him until they got his attention.

Evgeny Kolobrodov, who has been a fan since 1997, tweeted an image of the meeting, calling it the “best day of our lives.”

LGBT activists create the rainbow flag with their football strips

The group travelled to Moscow on June 28 (Lola & Sarah)

A group of six activists from all over the world donned football strips from their country to create the LGBT Pride flag in Moscow.

It is illegal to fly or show a rainbow pride flag, so the group wanted to create one in everyday situations so they could let the Russian LGBT community know they’re not alone.

Southgate comforts Colombian player

Southgate was pictured comforting Uribe after England's win (AP)

The country’s affection for England Manager Gareth Southgate grew and grew throughout the World Cup as he repeatedly showed kindness and humility.

Following Colombia’s defeat to England on penalties, Southgate was pictured comforting Mateus Uribe after he missed his.

People drew parallels with Southgate’s crushing penalty miss in 1996.

Panama fans and players celebrate country’s first goal in World Cup

The Panama squad scored their first goal in the history of the World Cup.

Felipe Baloy sent fans and TV commentators from Panama wild with his goal during the match despite being beaten by England 6-1.

Alan Shearer and BBC pundits’ big night out

Following England’s victory against Sweden in the quarter-final, BBC pundits Alan Shearer, Rio Ferdinand and Gary Lineker let their hair down with a night out to celebrate.

While Three Lions, Vindaloo and World in Motion might have been the popular songs sung back home, England legend Alan Shearer indulged in Lionel Richie’s hit All Night Long.

The hilarious moment was filmed by Ferdinand who shared it on social media so fans could watch at home.

Rival team cheers up crying fan

Team rivalry was halted for a moment during Poland’s match with Colombia, where the squad lost 3-0.

A young Polish fan crushed by the defeat was in tears but the opposing team's fans comforted the youngster and tried to cheer him up by patting him on the back.

Iain Meiklejohn uploaded the video of his son and said: “The Colombian fans were absolutely fantastic with him after the game.”

England squad celebrate and recreate 1990 dance

England players celebrating their win against Sweden (PA)

The England squad’s dance tribute to the class of Italia 90 was another of the brilliant moments from the World Cup.

Happy Kyle Walker, John Stones and Jesse Lingard paid tribute to the heroes of 1990 by recreating the famous dance after their win against Sweden.

Michy Batshuayi kicking a ball into his own face

Belgian player Michy Batshuayi got the meme treatment when he kicked a ball into his own face.

When celebrating, the striker accidentally kicked the ball off of the post, only for it to come hurtling back in his direction.

It’s Coming Home mania

An England fan in Russia (PA)

It’s Coming Home mania swept through England during the World Cup.

The Skinner and Baddiel hit had a resurrection during the tournament with everyone from Prince William to the cast of Hamilton singing the lyrics.

Fans could be heard chanting the song on every street corner until the early hours of the morning after each England win.