Al Rayyan (Qatar): Striker Romelu Lukaku is forward of schedule in his restoration from damage however won’t characteristic in opposition to Morocco in Belgium’s second World Cup Group F fixture on Sunday, coach Roberto Martinez confirmed.
Lukaku has performed two membership video games since August attributable to thigh and hamstring points, and Martinez is taking a cautious strategy in the direction of a participant who is vital to Belgium’s possibilities in Qatar.
“Romelu was solely ever going to be obtainable for the third recreation (in opposition to Croatia) and we are going to keep it up with that, however he’s forward of the place he ought to be,” Martinez informed reporters on Saturday.
“He has skilled twice now with the group and the indicators are excellent. We’ve to see how he reacts as we speak at coaching. I don’t count on him to be concerned (in opposition to Morocco), he’s nonetheless not 100% at the moment.”
Defender Toby Alderweireld and midfielder Kevin De Bruyne had been seen in a heated argument round when to play lengthy balls throughout Belgium’s lacklustre 1-0 opening victory over Canada. Martinez performed down the row and insists there is no such thing as a rift between the 2.
“We should always not attempt to create a problem the place there may be not one,” he stated. “You might have two skilled gamers which have performed over 70 video games collectively for the nationwide workforce. They’re each winners they usually actually need to carry out nicely.”
Martinez is cautious of the specter of Morocco, a workforce he is aware of nicely and with 4 Belgium-born gamers within the squad.
“They’re a workforce with an excellent combination between their aptitude and their high quality,” he says. “They’ve gamers that may create numerical benefits within the extensive areas. They’re well-organised, disciplined and have a very good construction within the center.
“They go eye-to-eye in opposition to anybody. They’ve an unbelievable perception.”
Belgium drew criticism for his or her poor show in opposition to the Canadians, which was nicely under the usual they’ve set in recent times.
However Martinez says they, like different groups within the competitors, will enhance having not had their ordinary preparation for a serious finals.
“We arrived on the first recreation with 5 (coaching periods) and meaning the workforce shouldn’t be prepared. We’ve seen groups begin very well (in matches) however then they may not handle the sport,” he stated.
“You will note groups being prepared solely after three video games. They’re having to prepare whereas they’re within the match and that’s harmful as a result of it might probably value you factors.”