Review England – Belgium

first_imgWith a moment of individual brilliance, Adnan Januzaj gave Belgium a 1-0 victory and the first place in Group G.The final two matches of the group stage are soon upon us…Here are the teams for #ENGBEL!#ENG #BEL pic.twitter.com/rvom0sQ4Ru— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) June 28, 2018Januzaj tips United to return to the top Obinna Echi – November 14, 2018 Adnan Januzaj has backed his former club Manchester United to start challenging for the Premier League title soon.Januzaj believes United need to make the…Even though first place was up for grabs, both Gareth Southgate and Roberto Martinez decided to make multiple changes to their starting lineups today in Kaliningrad. There was no Harry Kane, no Eden Hazard, no Romelu Lukaku and no Kevin De Bruyne. The lack of star power didn’t mean the fans weren’t still hoping to see an entertaining encounter.A defensive lapse allowed England to have a moment in the opening two minutes that ended with Courtois blocking a cross before it came to Jamie Vardy. Youri Tielemans blasted a long-distance strike in the 7th minute, catching Jordan Pickford a bit asleep. Luckily for England’s goalkeeper, the shot was in the middle of the net, so he made the save. A couple of minutes later, Adnan Januzaj made a few dribbles and then lobbed a cross that came to Mitchy Bashuayi. He headed the ball back towards the central area in front of Pickford and even though there wasn’t a distinct shot, the ball rolled towards the goal line before Gary Cahill cleared it just before it went in.Tielemans received the game’s first yellow card. In this contest, cards were particularly important, as they could determine the final standings in case of a draw. With this card, Belgium had two more than England overall. Another foul on Danny Rose earned Belgium’s second booking. This time the guilty party was Leander Dendoncker. Whistles were coming from all over the stadium. The fans weren’t happy. The Belgian defensive trio was passing the ball among each other, while the English players refused to press. It was more than obvious both teams were satisfied with the current situation.Gareth Southgate decided to save his main defender’s energy and replaced John Stones with Harry Maguire at the half. In the 51st minute, Adnan Januzaj’s individual brilliance gave The Red Devils a 1-0 advantage. He dummied Danny Rose and then curled a beautiful left-footed shot, leaving Pickford with no choice but to take the ball out of his net. Belgium took over first spot in Group G with the goal. Later on, Thomas Vermaelen suffered a cut on his eyebrow after an aerial duel with Jamie Vardy. Marcus Rashford missed from an ideal one-on-one situation with the goalkeeper in the 66th minute. What a miss! Courtois got a touch on the ball, but it doesn’t change the fact that if Rashford wants to be considered as a starter, he must not miss those types of opportunities.Roberto Martinez decided to give the recently recovered Vincent Kompany a run, taking off Vermaelen to make place for the experienced center back. The next swap was Danny Welbeck for Trent Alexander-Arnold, signalling a wish to tie the game. Although, based on the play, that wish was really weak. On the other hand, why would England try to earn a draw? Losing this match meant a meeting with Colombia (possibly without James Rodriguez) in the Round of 16 and then (potentially) either Switzerland or Sweden in the quarter-finals. It also meant avoiding Brazil, as well as the other superpowers in the top part of the draw. Pickford saved Dries Mertens’ effort in the 89th minute. Marouane Fellaini missed in the 92nd minute and that was it. Belgium won for the third time in three matches, finished first with 9 points and will meet Japan next.last_img

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