Belgium coach Roberto Martinez mentioned his gamers have been weighed down by a “concern of dropping” of their shock World Cup defeat by Morocco on Sunday. The world’s second-ranked facet must beat 2018 runners-up Croatia on Thursday to make sure of a last-16 place after their 2-0 loss on the Al Thumama Stadium. “I do assume it is as a result of we performed with a concern of dropping,” mentioned Martinez. “They work so laborious for one another off the ball however then on the ball I do not see that enjoyment…
“We’re a crew that’s often taking part in on the assault. We’re not taking part in with pleasure. It is perhaps the burden on our shoulders.”
Belgium have reached no less than the quarter-finals of the previous 4 main tournaments and completed third within the 2018 World Cup.
They sit second in Group F, having laboured to a 1-0 win over Canada of their opener, forward of Sunday’s later match between the North People and Croatia.
“Within the final recreation we have now to play to win it and as if we have now nothing to lose,” added Martinez.
“If we win towards Croatia we’re (nonetheless) within the World Cup and that is an enormous motivation.”
Captain Eden Hazard was a peripheral determine for lengthy durations and was changed by Dries Mertens with half an hour remaining.
“Eden, his function was to try to get to 60 minutes. We’ve to be taught from the previous,” mentioned Martinez.
“He had a really robust efficiency, in all probability the perfect I might seen him since towards Portugal within the Euros (final yr).”
Damage-plagued Hazard scored the winner towards Portugal however then was pressured off late on with a hamstring damage that stored him out of Belgium’s subsequent quarter-final loss to Italy.
“We needed to be taught from the previous. It was an excessive amount of of a danger in that second,” added Martinez.
Veteran defender Jan Vertonghen mentioned the defeat was right down to an absence of creativity in assault.
The Belgians managed solely 4 makes an attempt at purpose within the second half and their clearest alternative fell to Michy Batshuayi within the fourth minute.
“We’re hardly creating any probabilities. Plenty of issues undergo my thoughts now, however these are issues which might be greatest not mentioned on digicam,” Vertonghen informed broadcaster TV Sporza.
“It might probably solely get higher. We needed to qualify for the second spherical at present towards Morocco. It did not work out.
“Now it is make or break towards Croatia on Thursday.”
(This story has not been edited by NDTV workers and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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