Key gamers, accidents, techniques & match prediction

Key players, injuries, tactics & tournament prediction

This may very well be it for Belgium’s ‘Golden Technology’ as Roberto Martinez heads into his last match in cost with the nation. After a third-place end in Russia in 2018, there seems to be little hope that Belgium can go one recreation additional get their fingers on the trophy even if they’re at present ranked because the second-best males’s group on the planet by FIFA, behind solely Brazil.

Merely put, time has caught up with too many within the group and now solely Thibaut Courtois and Kevin De Bruyne stay true world class gamers nonetheless of their prime. The likes of Toby Alderweireld, Jan Vertonghen, Axel Witsel, Dries Mertens, Eden Hazard and even Romelu Lukaku have all seen their greatest years come and go however proceed to make up a major chunk of the squad.

Here is every thing that you must learn about Belgium forward of the World Cup.

Belgium vs Canada (November 23, 19:00 GMT)
Belgium vs Morocco (November 27, 13:00 GMT)
Croatia vs Belgium (December 1, 15:00 GMT)

Belgium vs Canada H2H file: Performed 1, Received 1
Belgium vs Morocco H2H file: Performed 3, Received 2, Misplaced 1
Belgium vs Croatia H2H file: Performed 8, Received 3, Drawn 2, Misplaced 3

Goalkeepers: Thibaut Courtois (Actual Madrid), Simon Mignolet (Membership Brugge), Koen Casteels (Wolfsburg).

Defenders: Jan Vertonghen (Anderlecht), Toby Alderweireld (Royal Antwerp), Wout Faes (Leicester Metropolis), Arthur Theate (Stade Rennais), Zeno Debast (Anderlecht), Thomas Meunier (Borussia Dortmund), Timothy Castagne (Leicester Metropolis).

Midfielders: Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester Metropolis), Amadou Onana (Everton), Youri Tielemans (Leicester Metropolis), Axel Witsel (Atletico Madrid), Hans Vanaken (Membership Brugge), Leander Dendoncker (Aston Villa), Yannick Carrasco (Atletico Madrid), Thorgan Hazard (Borussia Dortmund).

Forwards: Eden Hazard (Actual Madrid), Charles De Ketelaere (AC Milan), Leandro Trossard (Brighton & Hove Albion), Dries Mertens (Galatasaray), Jeremy Doku (Stade Rennais), Romelu Lukaku (Inter), Michy Batshuayi (Fenerbahce), Lois Openda (RC Lens).

The principle concern for Belgium would be the health of Romelu Lukaku, who has made solely 4 Serie A appearances thus far this season. The striker recovered from a hamstring harm that saved him out for 2 months solely to then undergo a quad harm towards Sampdoria on October 29.

“For the second he’s not accessible and is within the fingers of the docs. If he is able to take part in one of many first three matches, Romelu is a participant we’d like,” Roberto Martinez instructed L’Equipe in a current replace.

Proper wing-back Thomas Meunier sustained a fractured cheekbone throughout Dortmund’s win towards Hannover on October 19 however can be match to play within the match. Alexis Saelemaekers, a possible rival for that place, will miss the match totally attributable to a knee harm.

UEFA Nations League - League Path Group 4"The Netherlands v Belgium"

Kevin De Bruyne is the important thing man for Belgium / ANP/GettyImages

Thibaut Courtois

The Actual Madrid goalkeeper might be the perfect on the planet at his place proper now and will properly have his work minimize out for him in Qatar.

At 30 years of age and with 96 caps already to his title, Courtois is a key determine for Belgium and made essentially the most saves on the final World Cup with 27 in seven video games, successful the Golden Glove award for greatest goalkeeper within the course of.

Kevin De Bruyne

It is laborious to overstate simply how a lot Belgium depend on the person brilliance of Kevin De Bruyne now that captain Eden Hazard is fading. The Manchester Metropolis star will function additional up the pitch for his nation as a roaming playmaker, though Belgium may very well profit extra from him enjoying as one of many two central midfielders and inserting Leandro Trossard into the beginning lineup.

De Bruyne has 25 objectives in 93 appearances for his nation, however it’s his skill to supply probabilities that makes him so essential for Roberto Martinez and Belgium.

Romelu Lukaku

Capped over 100 instances by his nation, Romelu Lukaku is by far and away Belgium’s most prolific worldwide goalscorer. The 29-year-old has 68 to his title thus far, with 57 of these coming in his final 60 appearances for the Pink Devils.

He had a superb 2018 World Cup for Belgium, scoring 4 instances, and repeated the trick on the delayed Euro 2020 – proof that his objectives additionally come at necessary instances. Furthermore, Lukaku is the type of striker who scores all types of objectives, and he does not usually want a second invitiation if introduced with an opportunity to attain.

He is carrying an harm into the match, sure, however he stays a critical menace if he is able to go.

Belgium are most likely one of many best groups to foretell throughout the 2022 World Cup as a result of consistency of Roberto Martinez’s tactical strategy. They may play in the identical 3-4-3 form they’ve performed for the whole lot of his six-year spell in cost and he’s unlikely to make any dramatic adjustments to the beginning lineup.

As a result of Lukaku’s harm, Michy Batshuayi will begin because the central ahead forward of Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne, whereas the midfield and defence appears just about set. Maybe the one powerful choice Martinez might want to make is which centre-back to play alongside stalwarts Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen.

The 19-year-old Anderlecht defender Zeno Debast received the nod towards the Netherlands and Wales within the Nations League however is inexperienced. Martinez has choices, together with shifting central midfielder Leander Dendoncker again to supply extra mobility. Rennes’ centre-back Arthur Theate may very well be the only option however is extra used to enjoying in a again 4.

Belgium predicted XI: Courtois; Debast, Alderweireld, Vertonghen; Meunier, Witsel, Tielemans, Carrasco; De Bruyne, Batshuayi, Hazard.

The 4-1 house defeat to the Netherlands in June stands out, though Belgium did go on to return from behind and thrash Poland 6-1 within the very subsequent recreation. Since then, their two wins towards Poland and Wales have been uninspiring – as has the soccer. A slender 1-0 defeat to the Netherlands of their most up-to-date recreation, with Virgil Van Dijk heading in from a nook, hasn’t impressed any optimism forward of the match.

Belgium have just one pleasant towards Egypt on November 18 earlier than taking over Canada of their opening match.

Belgium’s final 5 outcomes

Belgium 6-1 Poland
Wales 1-1 Belgium
Poland 0-1 Belgium
Belgium 2-1 Wales
Netherlands 1-0 Belgium

All issues thought of, this Belgium group is much from the menace it was and they’re going to battle to advance deep into the match as they did in Russia. The playmaking skill of De Bruyne alone needs to be sufficient for Belgium to navigate a tough group containing Croatia and Morocco however after that, they may then face both Spain or Germany.

Any group with tempo may significantly expose Alderweireld and Vertonghen within the Belgian backline and with no absolutely match and firing Lukaku there is not sufficient of a aim menace on the different finish. Each potential opponents can be a nightmare matchup and one you’ll be able to’t actually see this ageing Belgium facet successful.

Prediction: Final 16

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