Belgium started off their World Cup campaign with an unconvincing 1-0 win over Canada. The Red Devils are now set to face Morocco, who held Croatia to a 0-0 draw in their opening match. Last Word on Sports predicts Belgium’s lineup and looks at their recent form heading into this fixture.
Belgium Predicted Lineup vs Morocco
— Belgian Red Devils (@BelRedDevils) November 26, 2022
How Belgium Have Lined-Up Recently
Roberto Martinez has employed a back-3 system for Belgium, regardless of the opposition. Firstly, Yashin Trophy winner Thibaut Courtois will keep his place in goal. The central defensive positions are expected to be the same, however, Martinez might decide to give Anderlecht teenager Zeno Debast a spot in his starting lineup over Leander Dendoncker
Secondly, the midfield could see Yannick Carrasco give way for Borussia Dortmund’s Thomas Meunier. Martinez prefers using the Dortmund man and Timothy Castagne as his preferred right and left-wing backs respectively. Youri Tielemans and Axel Witsel are expected to run the team from the midfield.
Eden Hazard captains the side again as he aims to regain his form from his Chelsea days. Kevin de Bruyne is also expected to start behind Belgium’s lone goalscorer from the first match, Michy Batshuayi.
Belgium Injuries to Consider
Romelu Lukaku should be available for Sunday’s match against Morocco, although the striker is still not ready to start. The Nerazzurri star has been struggling with a thigh injury this season, making just five appearances with the Serie A giants this term. One could see the Chelsea loanee on the bench against Morocco, but he may not be risked for this game. Thankfully for Martinez, there are no new injuries in the squad.
Belgium Recent Form and Tactics
Belgium had a rocky start to the tournament despite the result being in their favour. “It was a difficult game. Canada were better than us in what we wanted to do. I am delighted because we won the game through grit and determination and the quality of our goalkeeper”, said Martinez in the post-match press conference.
The Red Devils depend heavily on Manchester City star De Bruyne to run the midfield and provide the key passes. They are also known to stretch the field of play with their wing-backs Meunier and Castagne and use Batshuayi as their target man. Hazard is often used as an inverted winger, who tucks into the midfield to create an overload in the central areas and also as a traditional winger who takes the opposition defenders on.
In defence, the wing-backs drop deep to make a 5-4-1 formation, in an attempt to thwart opposition attacks. Tielemans operates as a deep-lying playmaker and is vital in building up attacks and also breaking up opposition play.
Belgium Predicted Lineup
The Belgians are expected to lineup in a 3-4-2-1 formation:
GK – Thibaut Courtois
LCB – Jan Vertonghen
CB – Toby Alderweireld
RCB – Leander Dendoncker
LWB – Timothy Castagne
CM – Axel Witsel
CM – Youri Tielemans
RWB – Thomas Meunier
LM – Eden Hazard
ST – Michy Batshuayi
RM – Kevin De Bruyne.