Belgium’s time to shine at World Cup, says Hazard

Belgium’s time to shine at World Cup, says Hazard

But it would be Japan that would score again when a poor clearance from Belgium saw the ball fall to Takashi Inui who blasted a long-distance effort past Courtois to make it 2-0 in the 52nd minute.

Belgium threw caution to the wind to reach the World Cup quarter-finals when substitute Nacer Chadli scored in the dying seconds as they beat spirited Japan 3-2 on Monday to set up a mouthwatering clash with five-time champions Brazil.

The victor of the Belgium-England match would take Group G and while there were strong arguments as to why perhaps winning for either side wasn't important due to future draws, Belgium got the job done as it won 1-0.Adrian Januzaj scored the game's lone goal on a blast in the 51st minute. They then beat England with a second-string team, thanks to a brilliant individual goal by Adnan Januzaj, although the Three Lions made eight changes themselves.

Roberto Martinez's side were trailing 2-0 when he brought on Marouane Fellaini and Nacer Chadli in the 65th minute, and Fellaini scored the equaliser before Chadli netted a 94th-minute victor. There is so much hype surrounding this Belgium side, anything but a semifinal appearance - matching the nation's best achievement in 1986 - will be deemed a disappointment.

"I remember the Wales game", Mertens said. "And he self-analysed his play very well".

"Keep believing in Belgium".

So Belgium are supposedly on the "tougher" side of the World Cup bracket.

Belgium are favored by 1.5 goals on 5dimes, another high for the round.




After a goalless first-half, the game exploded into life after the break.

Despite the odds heavily favouring them, Martinez is not willing to take the Asian side lightly.

The ball was moved downfield quickly and when Vertonghen failed to intercept the final pass, Haraguchi sprinted clear.

The comeback began just a few minutes later.

The improved performances from Lukaku strengthened Hazard's growing reputation as an effective leader of Roberto Martinez's team, even though the Chelsea man is a somewhat reluctant motivator.

Confidence grew in the Japanese ranks with attacking midfielder Kagawa calling the shots.

Fellaini didn't start the game. which is probably why Belgium started off so poorly.

Head coach Akira Nishino, meanwhile, revealed he has held lengthy conversations with goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima after some uncharacteristic mistakes in Japan's first two matches of the group stage.

Related Articles