World Cup 2018: Belgium coach happy to see attackers in full flow vs Tunisia

first_imgRomelu Lukaku and Eden Hazard’s brace and a goal from Michy Batshuayi gave Belgium a resounding 5-2 victory against Tunisia on Saturday and put them in command of Group G in this year’s World Cup.Before this, the Red Devils had defeated Panama 3-0 and with five goals from this match, they now have 8 goals in the 2018 FIFA World Cup so far. Only hosts Russia has managed to score as many goals as the Belgians so far in the World Cup. They hammered five past Saudi Arabia in the World Cup opener and then scored three against Egypt.After racking up two wins and a goal difference of plus-six Belgium are virtually assured of advancing but it is not yet guaranteed – and they will be aware that they will need to tighten up at the back to handle the threat of the big guns deeper into the tournament.2018 FIFA WORLD CUP: FULL COVERAGEWith six points and a plus-six goal difference, Belgium are now into the last 16 of the World Cup and they will look to finish the group on top when they take on England on June 28 in their final game.#REDTOGETHERThx @fanclub1895 4 the support #WorldCup #BELTUN#ENGBEL pic.twitter.com/beSHqtvDIiBelgian Red Devils (@BelRedDevils) June 23, 2018Belgium’s attack has been in full flow so far and is ably led by Romelu Lukaku, who has scored four goals from two matches and is the joint top scorer in this year’s tournament with Cristiano Ronaldo. And, his coach was happy with his and the team’s attacking display after the first two matches. However, he is aware of their shortcomings at the back as well.advertisement”It’s not easy to score that amount of goals in two games,” said Belgium coach Martinez following their 3-0 opening win over Panama.FIFA WORLD CUP: FIXTURES | POINTS TABLE”Today was a different game to Panama, they were very deep and structured, we had to find solutions. You have to give a lot of credit to Tunisia for wanting to press high up and make it a really open game. It is really good for us to be able to adapt to different types of games.”We had to suffer in spells but when we were in full flow going forward, we look really sharp. On top you have the talent and the quality but since we came together it’s been a joy to see a group of players working so hard.”World Cup 2018: Romelu Lukaku equals Diego Maradona’s 32-year-old recordRAGGED DEFENDINGBelgium were much the better team from the off, looking dangerous on almost every attack, but they were seriously aided and abetted by some ragged defending and non-existing marking from their opponents.Syam Ben Youssef needlessly crashed into Hazard to give away a sixth-minute penalty, which the captain calmly converted.Ali Maaloul then gave the ball after 16 minutes to allow Dries Mertens to drive forward before rolling it into the path of Lukaku to plant it low into the corner. Belgium’s shaky defence gave away two easy goals vs Tunisia (Reuters Photo)Tunisia hit back two minutes later with a Dylan Bronn header as Belgium’s own sometimes shaky defending was exposed but another misplaced Tunisian pass enabled Thomas Meunier to feed his goal-hungry striker as Lukaku clipped in to make it 3-1 in stoppage time.World Cup 2018: Romelu Lukaku demands more from Belgium after Tunisia winFollowing his double against Panama it took the him to four goals for the tournament, level with Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo, and made him Belgium’s highest scorer at a single World Cup after one-and-a-half games.An inch-perfect Kevin de Bruyne pass sent Hazard clear for his second six minutes after the restart, the midfielder showing superb balance and skill to round keeper Farouk Ben Mustapha.Substitute Batshuayi then had a remarkable last 20 minutes, having a shot cleared off the line, hitting the bar inexplicably from point-blank range and having another effort brilliantly saved before finally finding the target in the 90th with a good finish.Belgium were generally on cruise-control for the final half hour, with Hazard and Lukaku taken off for a rest, though the North Africans had the last word as Wahbi Khazri scored in stoppage time.”The Belgian team is a superior side,” Tunisian coach Nabil Maaloul said. “We would like to apologise to the Tunisian fans. We did our best and we will try to improve our performance in the future.”(With inputs from Reuters)last_img

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