Tuesday, 17 July, 2018

Lukaku double sinks Panama

Eden Hazard Belgium 2018 Getty Images
Cassandra Gardner | 21 June, 2018, 22:13

Panama, on the other hand, have an uphill battle on their hands to prove they could upset some of the well-established teams in their group and try as hard as possible to advance.

Speaking to India Today, the 10-year-old ball boy from Bengaluru said "I am so excited, you can not measure it even". "The most important thing to me is to win matches".

Belgium cruised to a 3-0 victory over World Cup new-boys Panama on Monday, with Napoli striker Dries Mertens scoring an absolute peach.

Belgium's three goals against the lowly Panama sees them top of their group on goal difference ahead of England, who scored a late victor on Monday night to edge past Tunisia 2-1.

Panama's defence was stingy but also disorganised at times and became even more susceptible after Mertens' goal forced Panama to push forward looking for an equaliser.

The two goals from Lukaku came shortly after Mertens scored from about 18 yards in the opening moments of the second half, finally relieving some pressure after Belgium was unable to break down Panama for the first 45 minutes.

A double from Romelu Lukaku, ably assisted by Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne, finished off the Central Americans in their first game at the World Cup finals. The Manchester City playmaker cut inside and scooped in a pinpoint cross onto Lukaku's head. As half-time approached, Panama had to rely on goalkeeper Jaime Penedo, who saved well from Hazard and at the feet of the marauding Lukaku.

"For me it's important to have the right line in the box", Lukaku said.

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Belgium were the first European nation to qualify for the World Cup in Russian Federation. They were among four unbeaten European teams to qualify for the World Cup and were joint top goal scorers with Germany on 43.

The first two goals showcased the individual brilliance English football fans are all to aware Belgium possess.

The emotion was heavy for the Panamanians who flocked to the Black Sea resort town to see the country play their first World Cup match. In terms of possession, Belgium had its way with Panama and had little difficulty forcing turnovers in the attacking half.

Panama starting XI: Penedo, Murillo, Escobar, R Torres, Davis, Gomez, Godoy, Cooper, J Rodriguez, Barcenas, Perez. "It was historic what we went through here today".

"I'd say England are a bit more direct than Belgium".

Despite the routine nature of the win, Belgium really shouldn't be getting carried away with the result as the ability of the opposition has to be taken into account.

It was a fine run by Eden Hazard too that set him up. Hazard had been subject to an injury scare ahead of the start of the tournament, but those concerns have since been played down by Martinez, and the Chelsea winger will surely start as captain of the side on Monday.

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