Then there were eight: A look at World Cup’s quarter-finalists

Then there were eight: A look at World Cup’s quarter-finalists

Belgium have been referred to as darkish horses for thus lengthy and by so many who they’ll certainly not be referred to as the darkish horses anymore.

The dramatic late winner they scored towards Japan ought to function a purple flag for all groups; if you happen to go away your self uncovered at the again, it’ll solely take a couple of seconds for the Crimson Devils to have the ball behind your web.

The match towards Japan additionally confirmed how versatile Belgium’s attacking threats might be. If the tempo, trickery and crafty of Eden Hazard, Dries Mertens and Kevin de Bruyne don’t get you, then the uncooked energy and heading skill of Romelu Lukaku, Marouane Fellaini or one in every of their three centre-backs certainly will.

The match’s high scorers are the match’s high scorers for a purpose. A gung-ho method has labored nicely to this point towards weaker opponents than them however they now tackle match favourites Brazil, who match or outmatch them in star energy, big-game expertise, historical past and tactical nous.

Attempting to close out this Belgium juggernaut could also be an train in futility, however outscoring them shouldn’t be. Proper wing-back Thomas Meunier has already spoken of how tough it is going to be to cease his PSG teammate Neymar and all Belgian gamers must do their bit whereas defending if they’re to succeed in solely their second-ever World Cup semi-final.

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