Belgium's Romelu Lukaku to recover from injury in time to face England

by Wade Massey June 29, 2018, 7:08
Belgium's Romelu Lukaku to recover from injury in time to face England

Southgate was adamant nothing other than three points against Belgium has been discussed, insisting his side are prepared for the prospect of facing more hard opponents, having beaten Panama and Tunisia so far in Russian Federation.

"None of us know if this side of the draw is advantageous or not".

England's Eric Dier and England manager Gareth Southgate during training.

The pre-match build-up has been dominated by questions over whether it would be beneficial to finish second in the group and avoid the top half of the draw, packed with heavyweights Brazil, France, Argentina, Uruguay and Portugal, until a potential final.

Japan coach Akira Nishino has warned his players against complacency when they meet the already eliminated Poles.

You would think that the first priority for both teams in a football match is to win.

The average age of the England side for the clash is 25 years and 207 days, which makes it the second youngest the Three Lions have ever started in a major tournament. With England pedestrian, the Belgium players passed around the defence and Adnan Januzaj beat Rose, cut inside on his left foot, and released an unstoppable shot into the far corner.

We've said it once we'll say it again - it's coming home, LADs. Belgium were winning - or losing, depending on what side of the fence you were sitting on. Ironically what the Belgian forward felt afterwards is what most of us who had watched the game felt: a tinge of pain with a side order of embarrassment.

"Kane is strong, he has confidence right now, he wants to be the top scorer". Southgate ignored the pleas of a desperate Kane, jumping up and down screaming "pick me, pick me" and opted for Danny Welbeck.

England nearly responded immediately, but Rashford missed a glorious chance after being sent clear by Jamie Vardy, though Courtois managed to keep him out with a finger-tip save. It didn't have the desired effect.

He said: "For tomorrow I hope it will be a good game because I'm afraid second place may be better in the group".

"We want to win the game, that would mean we would top the group, and we play who we play in the next round", Southgate added.

The Germans on Thursday morning sensationally joined the curse of the champions, as now four of the last five ruling World Cup holders since 2002 have been eliminated in the group stage.

Watch England vs. Belgium to find out.

We now have one day to catch our breath before the World Cup returns on Saturday.

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