Belgium sweat on Lukaku injury and promise major changes against England

Belgium's Roberto Martinez
Roberto Martinez has only lost one match in nearly two years charge of Belgium
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23 June, 2018

It looks a simple task for Belgium on paper - but this World Cup isn't going to the script.

Hazard then ran on to a long pass in the 51st, flicked the ball around Ben Mustapha and shot into an empty net. They can officially claim a spot in the knockout stages if Panama fail to defeat England on Sunday - setting up a final-day battle between the two European sides to decide top spot in the group.

Belgium light up the group stages with a ruthless demolition of Tunisia.

The highest average number of goals scored at a World Cup was in Switzerland in 1954, with an incredible 140 goals in 26 games - an average of 5.4 per match.

Lukaku joined Cristiano Ronaldo as the tournament's leading scorer on four goals while Chelsea forward Eden Hazard also scored twice against Tunisia.

Belgium go into the second half with a narrow 2-1 lead, despite dominating for large spells of the first 45 minutes.

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Belgium coach Roberto Martinez revealed on Friday he has been keeping one eye on next week's blockbuster clash with England in the lead-up to the Red Devils' Group G match against Tunisia.

Only in the 90th minute, after Youri Tielemans found him in the box, did Batshuayi tally his first World Cup goal, and Khazri answered in the 93rd minute, moments before the full-time whistle.

Tunisia did manage a late consolation when Khazri swept home Hamdi Nagguez's cross but, unless Panama beat England, they will become the third African team to be eliminated, leaving Nigeria and Senegal to carry their continent's hopes in this competition.

On the injuries, he added: "Lukaku picked up an ankle injury, Hazard picked up a calf injury, and Dries Mertens had a knock on his ankle".

Belgium opened with a 3-0 win over Panama 3-0 and another win against Tunisia would nearly certainly secure a place in the knockout stages from Group G.

In the only other change, Naim Sliti has been replaced on the left wing by Saif-Eddine Khaoui.


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