Belgium were one of the first European nations to guarantee themselves a place at the 2018 World Cup thanks to a strong qualifying campaign that saw them win 9, draw 1, and lose none while averaging over 4 goals per game and conceding just 6 (half of those in just one game on a silly pitch in Bosnia) in the 10 games. Led by captain Eden Hazard, the Red Devils enter next summer’s tournament as surely one of the biggest favorites for the title.
They finished off the qualifying campaign with another lopsided win, this time over Cyprus, to the uwin over Cyprus. Manager Roberto Martinez rotated the squad a bit, but Hazard, Batshuayi, and Courtois still all started, as did Thorgan Hazard. It was the first time the two oldest Hazard started a game together for Belgium. As fate would have it, they’d both end up scoring.
Eden got things started just after 10 minutes with a well-placed shot from range.
Thorgan made it 2-0 just after the restart, getting first to the rebound from Michy’s well-worked shot.
Eden added a third from the penalty spot after a bit of a harsh call.
By then, Batshuayi had made way for Dries Mertens, completing 56 minutes of decent football as warm-up for the biggest opportunity to make his mark at Chelsea while Morata’s injured. Eden soon followed, getting to rest for the final quarter of an hour.
The draw for the groups at the World Cup will take place on December 1st.