Belgium and Eden Hazard prepare for match in Serbia

Oct 11, 2012 Comments Off by

This Friday, 12th of October, Belgium will play another very important match against Serbia. Together with Croatia and Serbia, Belgium are expected to battle for the first place in the group.

3 Chelsea owned players are expected to start: Eden Hazard, Kevin De Bruyne, and Thibaut Courtois. Midfielder Fellaini is injured, just like Lukaku, also owned by Chelsea.

The match will be crucial to the World Cup 2014 campaign. Serbian players are known for their solid defense, and excellent attackers. They mostly just need half a chance to put the goal behind the goalkeeper. Belgium actually might have more talent, but the team is still known to make those 1-2 little mistakes per game, that decides over win or loss.

In that regards, it is questionable if current coach Marc Wilmots has enough tactical knowledge to lead Belgium to a qualification. Captain Vincent Kompany, who plays as centre-back, and can play libero, was injured this week. Wilmots, surprisingly declared, that in case of injury Daniel Van Buyten would be his substitute. Let’s analyze this situation in detail!

Coach Wilmots has the choice over several players that can play centre-back:

  • Thomas Vermaelen,  26 years, Captain of Arsenal, estimated value of 18,5 Million Euro.
  • Jan Vertonghen, 25 years, Tottenham, Best Player in Holland last Year, was captain of Ajax, won the league, estimated 15 Million Euro.
  • Nicolas Lombaerts, 27 years, Zenit St. Petersburg, won the league, estimated 10 Million Euro.
  • Daniel Van Buyten, 34 years, Bayern Munich, on the bench, not playing in first team, nothing won last season, as former captain never made Belgium qualify for any tournament, known for his 1-2 mistakes per game, estimated only 2,5 Million Euro.

Wanting to add Van Buyten in the starting lineup, with Serbia knowing they will make a goal from the first defensive mistake, is showing a dramatic lack of football knowledge.

So the coach has the choice between 3 Belgian players who are OR captain, OR won their league last season, have the perfect age (25-27), and are wanted and valued by many clubs in Europe (value over 10 Million Euro), OR an old player, who sits on the bench in his own club, and is close to the end of his career.

Probable lineup Serbia - Belgium - 12 Oct 2012

Probable lineup Serbia – Belgium – 12 Oct 2012

And stíll he chooses Van Buyten, we hope “because he is right-footed”, and not because he speaks French. Wanting to add Van Buyten in the starting lineup, with Serbia knowing they will make a goal from the first defensive mistake, is showing a dramatic lack of football knowledge.  We hope Vincent Kompany will take the necessary steps (take an injection, and play with small injury) to prevent Belgium being eliminated for the first place after 3 games already.

Guillaume Gillet was injured this week as well but seems to be fit again. Now, Gillet is aq very offensive right-back, and a great midfielder at moments, but Gillet is not a native defender, and a good Serbian trainer with an offensive winger will for sure exploit the Belgium  defensive weakness on the right. It is up to Wilmots to put the wrong player there, or maybe this small injury will help him him to take the right choice: native defender Toby Alderweireld, Ajax, as right-back.

On offensive side, Belgium will most likely play with Dries Mertens, Eden Hazard, and Kevin Mirallas (for counter attack and efficiently better than Aston Villa attacker Christian Benteke).

It is also not impossible that Wilmots believes this setup has to many offensive players, and will opt for good-old (or too-old) Timmy Simons, also ex-captain of the Belgian team. He would then be playing next to Witsel.

Last but not least, we hope that Eden can organize the counter, as efficiently as it is done at Chelsea, because Belgium will need to make at least one goal.


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