Preview - England vs Belgium 29 June 18

Started by Harry85, Jun 28, 2018, 12:42 AM

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Harry85

World Cup Group G
England vs Belgium
Friday, June 29th, 2018
03:00am, (GMT +8 Timing)
Stadium: Kaliningrad Stadium

England:
Last five matches form: D W W W W
Average goals per match last ten: 1.60
Average goals against per match last ten: 0.40
Top Scorer: Harry Kane (18)

Belgium:
Last five matches form: D W W W W
Average goals per match last ten: 3.10
Average goals against per match last ten: 0.90
Top Scorer: Romelu Lukaku (40)


Group G is all done and dusted in terms of who progresses and who doesn't, but we do still have the matter of who tops the Group to be decided. The two teams in contention lock horns in the final round of fixtures.

Not all of the groups have gone according to script at the World Cup Finals, but this one certainly has with England and Belgium proving much too good for Panama and Tunisia overall.

The pair have compiled identical records going into this game registering two wins from two games, scoring eight goals and conceding two.

Looking at the way the draw is panning out it may actually be advantageous to finish second in this group overall, and potentially keep away from Brazil, Argentina and France. Although that would be banking on the remaining games going as expected and as we have seen so far, that may not be the case.

With second spot already booked we wouldn't be surprised to see Belgium rest many of their star men here with the incentive of overhauling England and clinching first spot hardly compelling.

Southgate will likely also make changes and will surely at least leave out those players on a booking.

A tough one to call given the questionable motivations of the sides but we suspect England will end up picking up the three points in this one.


Prediction: England 2 - 0 Belgium

Harry85

#1
Jun 29, 2018, 01:31 PM Last Edit: Jun 29, 2018, 01:33 PM by Harry85
Half time: 0 - 0
Full time: 0 - 1
Shots: 8 - 8
Shots on target: 2 - 5
Corner Kicks: 7 - 2
Possession: 47% - 53%

Just the two bookings in this one, both for Belgium, with Youri Tielemans and Leander Dendoncker the men to have their names taken by referee Damir Skomina.

Wholescale changes were made by both managers ahead of this game, with much debate about whether it would be better to finish first or second in this Group. With England holding top spot headed into the match, it was a little surprising to see Belgium reverse the placings with this win. Whilst England's overall draw may now look more straightforward than that of Belgium on paper, as we have seen already in this World Cup not everything may be as clear cut as it would initially seem.

It was Belgium who came closest in the opening period, Gary Cahill forced to clear off the line following a Pickford fumble and ensuing goalmouth scramble. 0-0 at the break.

We did have a goal in the game in the end, and it was a cracker. Adnan Junuzaj finding himself in space in the back right corner of the 18 yard box before cutting inside onto his left foot and rifling an excellent strike into the top left corner. Jordan Pickford will perhaps be a little disappointed with his effort though on a night were he largely failed to convince throughout.

England's best chance fell to Marcus Rashford. Springing the offside trap to be sent racing through on goal by Jamie Vardy, he seemed certain to score but a combination of a slightly misplaced shot and the keepers fingertips sent the ball wide.

We of course already knew we would be seeing these two sides in the last 16 but exactly who they will face has now been decided. England will play Colombia, whilst Belgium take on Japan.


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