Thursday, July 25, 2024

Belgium without Courtois at a major tournament for first time since 2002

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 17 Jun 2024

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Belgium played at a major tournament without Thibaut Courtois for the first time since 2002 when they kicked off their Euro 2024 campaign against Slovakia.

Real Madrid goalkeeper Courtois was a big-name omission from Domenico Tedesco’s squad.

Courtois endured an injury-hit campaign with Madrid, but returned to fitness in time to help Los Blancos win the Champions League final at Wembley on June 1.

However, that was not enough to see him make the Red Devils’ squad, and it meant that when Belgium got their Group E campaign under way in Frankfurt on Monday, they played without Courtois at a major tournament for the first time since 2002.

Courtois played in every game of Belgium’s campaigns at the 2014, 2018 and 2022 World Cups, while also featuring in each of their matches at Euro 2016 and 2020.

Koen Casteels, the Wolfsburg shot-stopper, deputised in Courtois’ place against Slovakia.

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