Fiji Time: 2:24 AM on Monday 3 August

Fiji Times Logo

/ Front page / Sport

Belgium ready for battle

Afp
Tuesday, May 20, 2014

BRUSSELS - A few years ago the notion of Belgium as fifth favourites to win a World Cup ahead of France, Italy and England would have seemed ludicrous even to the country's most ardent supporters.

Just making the World Cup finals proved beyond the Red Devils in 2006 and 2010, their last appearance coming back in 2002 when they lost to eventual winners Brazil in the last 16.

Yet here they are, bags packed for Brazil with 'dark horses' firmly stamped on their passports and only the hosts, Argentina, Germany and Spain above them in the betting.

Coach Marc Wilmots' talented squad sailed through their qualifying group unbeaten, barely putting a foot wrong against Croatia, Serbia and Scotland.

They sealed their berth to Brazil with a game to spare in Zagreb, Romelu Lukaku's double doing the damage. They start in Group H against Algeria, Russia and South Korea.

Star players like Chelsea's Eden Hazard, Wolfsburg's Kevin de Bruyne, Lukaku (loaned by Chelsea to Everton), Manchester City's Vincent Kompany and Lukaku's Everton teammate Kevin Mirallas ply their trade in Europe's main leagues.

And that presence beyond Belgium's borders according to veteran central defender Daniel van Buyten is one of the reasons for Belgium's soccer renaissance.





Fiji Times Front Page Thumbnail

Kaila Front Page ThumbnailFiji Times & Kaila Frontpage PDF Downloads

Use the free Acrobat Reader to view.

Westpac
Code Inward TTs Outward TTs
CAD 0.61530.5963
JPY 59.284856.2848
GBP 0.30290.2949
EUR 0.43260.4206
NZD 0.72270.6897
AUD 0.65180.6268
USD 0.47520.4582

from

$0.00

Exchange Rate updated on 31st July 2015

Today's Most Read Stories

  1. Commander resigns
  2. Chaudhry at helm
  3. School bullies
  4. LMS sets Deans title defence plot
  5. Ryan eyes veteran Bobo to join sevens team
  6. Woman dies in road accident
  7. Draunidalo remains NFP president
  8. Party queries protection of landowners' resources
  9. Call to remain active
  10. Seaweed farming grows

Top Stories this Week

  1. Deaths haunt 15-year-old Monday (27 Jul)
  2. Dad dies, kids worry Tuesday (28 Jul)
  3. Distraught mum recalls promise Tuesday (28 Jul)
  4. Flying Fijians spoil Samoan celebrations Monday (27 Jul)
  5. Sex trafficking source Thursday (30 Jul)
  6. Truck sinks into town road Monday (27 Jul)
  7. Teary farewell for trio Friday (31 Jul)
  8. Final goodbye Wednesday (29 Jul)
  9. Unrealistic airfares Monday (27 Jul)
  10. No say over lease Friday (31 Jul)