Belgium begin their World Cup campaign next Wednesday against Canada, but before their Qatari adventure gets underway, Roberto Martinez will be putting his players through their paces in neighbouring Kuwait against Egypt. The international match-up represents a final chance for the Belgium boss to analyse his squad and get his side used to the subterranean heat of the Middle East.
The Red Devils have a squad of seasoned veterans (Jan Vertonghen, Toby Alderweireld and Dries Mertens are all in) and fledging stars, with Charles De Ketelaere, Lois Openda, Amadou Onana and Jeremy Doku all set to make their World Cup debuts this year. Martinez will need to find the right equilibrium between experience and youth if Belgium are to better their third-placed finish in 2018.
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Belgium v Egypt match stats
Michy Batshuayi has enjoyed another stellar year for Belgium, proving more heavyweight at international level. In fact, the former Chelsea marksman is Belgium’s top scorer in 2022, with four goals, coming against Wales, Poland and the Netherlands in the Nations League, as well as against the Republic of Ireland in an international friendly. He certainly cannot be accused of being a flat-track bully given the calibre of opposition in a competitive setting.
06 Jun 2018 – Belgium 3-0 Egypt – International Friendly
09 Feb 2005 – Egypt 4-0 Belgium – International Friendly
30 Mar 1999 – Belgium 0-1 Egypt – International Friendly
Martinez has faced Egypt before as Belgium manager, coming once again on the eve of a World Cup. His side secured a comprehensive 3-0 win over Hector Cuper’s Pharaohs, with Romelu Lukaku, Eden Hazard and Marouane Fellaini getting the goals at the Koning Boudewijn Stadion in Brussels.
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