Verdict: Belgium win
Best Odds: 11/8
Looking to do the double over Belgium on foreign soil this weekend, England will make the trip out to Heverlee on Sunday night.
Starting with the hosts, despite making a string of alterations earlier in the week, Belgium did manage to secure a 2-1 win against Switzerland on home soil and the Red Devils will be desperate to keep up that momentum. Looking to fully bounce back from their shock defeat away at Wembley last month, Roberto Martinez’s men still hold their #1 ranking with FIFA and have managed to hang onto their spot at the top of League A Group 2. Last seen on Nations League duties picking up what was a hard-fought 2-1 win against Iceland on foreign soil, the one-time Wigan boss also sees his side continuing on what has been a real romp on home soil. Remarkably, Sunday’s hosts are unbeaten in any of their home fixtures since September 2016. Led by leading marksman Romelu Lukaku who bagged Belgium’s consolation strike at Wembley last month, it should be noted that the Inter Milan ace has recorded 15 goals in his last 14 international appearances.
Belgium goalkeeper Thomas Kaminski, a late call-up, has withdrawn from the hosts’ squad after testing positive for Covid-19.
As for the visitors, much like Belgium, England will be desperate to build off of their own friendly victory from behind closed doors earlier in the week. Failing to build off of their shock victory over the Red Devils last month, Gareth Southgate’s side were hit with a 1-0 defeat at home against Denmark and they suddenly find themselves sat third in League A Group 2. Making a host of alterations at Wembley in midweek, the Three Lions did manage to secure a 3-0 romp against British rivals Ireland and they will undoubtedly be boosted by the likes of skipper and Tottenham ace Harry Kane making his return this weekend. Hoping to cause what would be another upset and secure back-to-back victories against the world number one’s on Sunday night, Southgate will be calling on his side to make some much-needed alterations on the road. While they might have managed to snatch a dramatic late 1-0 win in Iceland, England have won just a pair of their six Nations League away fixtures within 90 minutes.
Wolves defender Conor Coady has left the England camp after testing positive for coronavirus, and Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford will miss out through injury.
Liverpool centre-back Joe Gomez’s knee injury, sustained in training this week, keeps him out for the foreseeable future, too.
Key Factors to Consider
- When the two sides faced off at Wembley last month, England picked up a 2-1 victory.
- Belgium striker Romelu Lukaku has recorded 15 goals in his last 14 international appearances.
- Each of the Red Devils’ last five contests have finished with both teams finding the net.
- England have failed to find the net from open play in any of their last three away fixtures on the bounce.
- Four of England’s last five Nations League matchups have seen under 2.5 goals.
While Belgium might have suffered a 2-1 loss when they made the trip to Wembley last month, there is no doubt that Sunday’s hosts will be looking to write that wrong this weekend. Despite managing to pick up what was a routine 3-0 win against British strugglers Ireland earlier in the week, they were last seen on Nations League duties getting hit with a 1-0 loss against Denmark on home soil. Enduring what has been a sluggish run of form on foreign soil, Romelu Lukaku and co should be relishing a chance to widen their buffer at the top of the table.
Verdict: Belgium win
Best Odds: 11/8
- Soccer News Like
- Be the first of your friends!