England and Belgium make wholesale changes

England and Belgium make wholesale changes

Adnan Januzaj scored the only goal of the game, meaning Gareth Southgate's side will play Colombia in the last 16 on Tuesday evening.

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Belgium have the resources to better overcome the absence of the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Kevin de Bruyne, Eden Hazard, Dries Mertens, Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen. "It's been unusual to see them struggle as much as they have". Whilst Eric Dier could get the nod in central midfield. We created some very good chances and I don't think we conceded the game in any way.

England's Trent Alexander-Arnold said he was "very disappointed" to lose the final World Cup group-stage game to Belgium, and said the team did not pay attention to talk that they were better off losing.

Indeed, Martinez said before the match that Belgium's priority was not to win, suggesting he would choose a deliberately weaker starting line-up in the hope of missing out on the top of the pile.

England had an excellent chance to level after Jamie Vardy played Marcus Rashford through on goal but his shot went wide with the help of a small touch from Thibaut Courtois. It is a question that has nagged at the England manager this week. Kyle Walker is on a booking and is rested with Harry Maguire also dropping out.

But Southgate did concede he would probably make some changes for a clash that neither side needs to win.

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"Winning the World Cup on 15 July would be an unanswerable response".

"I think the supporters in the stadium understood that as well". Eight are expected, with Kane keeping his place to lead them.

With both teams already guaranteed a place in the next round, this game was always about resting players, avoiding yellow card suspensions and just keeping things ticking over. It was Belgium's first win over England since 1936, and extends The Red Devils unbeaten streak to 22 matches.

Now, we seem to be faced with a similar dilemma with teams that play later can engineer their performance to chart their course. You don't want to see smiles in the changing rooms.

"We had an opportunity to show all the talent we have in the group", he said.

Their battle in Kaliningrad follows the dramatic exit of Joachim Loew´s 2014 winners, who finished rock bottom of their group after a 2-0 defeat to South Korea, the final humiliation after a campaign that never caught fire. We saw that in the Euros two years ago. If you look back to the last World Cup, they did unbelievably well. He has tested that philosophy to its limits, locating them in Kaliningrad's Radisson hotel, over the road from the Maxim strip club and right in the centre of town.

"But at the end of the day we are still in the round of 16 and that's what we're looking forward to".