clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Courtois can't prevent Belgium loss; Begovic impresses for Bosnia; Nigeria fail to qualify for Africa Cup of Nations

Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images

A busy Tuesday on the international calendar, with ACN qualifiers taking place in Africa, World Cup qualifiers taking place in the Americas, and plenty of friendlies happening all around Europe.  Let's start with the latter.

Both Chelsea goalkeepers started for their respective national sides, and while both had good games, only Asmir Begovic walked away a winner.  He played the first hour or so of Bosnia and Herzegovina's impressive 2-0 win over Switzerland, hanging on to his clean sheet with a series of excellent saves.

Thibaut Courtois, for all his first half saves, couldn't quite prevent Belgium from losing 2-1 in Portugal -- Nani and Cristiano Ronaldo were both left with the easiest of finishes thanks to some horrendous defending that surely reminded the Chelsea goalkeeper of Chelsea's defending for much of the season.  Belgium basically didn't bother showing up until the second half, by which time it was too late.  Ex-Chelsea man Romelu Lukaku did pull one back (from a cross by his younger brother Jordan!) and possible future Chelsea-man Radja Nainggolan tested Rui Patricio with a rasping shot (and tested several angle ligaments, too, with fouls) and came close with another long range effort in the final ten minutes.

Young Andreas "Beckenbauer" Christensen was also on the losing end in his second ever international start as Denmark lost 1-0 away to Scotland.  The teenager did play the full 90 minutes.

England lost, too, 2-1 to the Netherlands at Wembley, probably because Gary "best captain ever" Cahill stayed on the bench throughout.  On the winning end, Marco van Ginkel got his first cap in two years as a second half substitute.  I guess England aren't going to win Euro 2016 after all.

Both Branislav Ivanovic and Nemanja Matic started for Serbia, who actually notched a rare victory thanks to Kolarov's late winner in Estonia.  Ivanovic played the full 90 while Matic was withdrawn just after the hour mark.

Earlier in the day, Nigeria, with both Mikel and Moses in the starting lineup, lost 1-0 to Egypt and thus confirmed their non-participation in the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations.  Nigeria will now miss out on Africa's biggest tournament for the second edition in a row.  Moses did hit the upright just a few minutes from time.

Elsewhere, Burkina Faso stayed top of their group as they hung on with 10 men for a 0-0 draw in Uganda.  Bertrand Traore started as the center forward and played most of the game.  They look on course to qualify for the January tournament, which will of course mean that Traore won't be available during that time (presuming he stays with the Chelsea first team and doesn't get loaned out).

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the We Ain't Got No History Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of Chelsea news from We Ain't Got No History