It was four years ago but the memory has not disappeared from Belgian memories. Quite the contrary. The wound is still gaping and will probably never heal, accompanied by the feeling of having missed a unique chance to reach the final. Eternal regrets for a generation given its last chance to shine. Here is Hazard again, at least what is left of it, Witsel, Courtois and others on the threshold of the World Cup with this renewed ambition to seize the trophy. If the former Chelsea star was tarnished by repeated injuries which prevented him from giving his full potential, another star has asserted himself. At 31, Kevin De Bruyne is at the peak of his career. Bright with Manchester City, the native of Tronchiennes will have a good part of the fate of his selection at his feet. A weight that he seems able to bear, especially since he won’t be alone either. Offensively, his relationship with Lukaku is well established and the Inter Milan striker has the ability to pose a constant threat to the opposing defense with his power and sharp sense of goal. On condition of playing, the attacker being still uncertain for this 1st round. Their ability to find each other will determine the Belgian impact, not to mention the presence of a confusing and hard-hitting Carasco, the precious Mertens or even an Eden Hazard anxious to be reborn. “If my body allows me, I can still do great things”he confided to The Team.
In addition to his offensive qualities, Belgium will also be able to count on an imperial Courtois, probably the best in his position at the moment, as he never ceased to prove all last season with Real Madrid. Without him, the Merengues would certainly not have known their success and even less won their 14th Champions League. The mere presence of the Belgian goalkeeper, combined with that of De Bruyne, is enough to grant a status of contenders to a selection that advances hidden. “We are less strong than in 2018”evacuated in The Team Hazard, maintaining that his team consisted of “fantastic players” but was more struggling collectively. Nevertheless, the Belgians will not be able to hide for long and intend to rely on their collective experience. “Our experience can be an advantage, against Canada for example. It’s been six years with the coach and more with the players, it’s positive, especially at a World Cup where you don’t have time to prepare”, exposes Axel Witsel. Facing Canada, they will have to assume their status and show themselves up to an opponent, who did not come to Qatar for tourism.
David: “Changing Football for Canadians”
“I want to help change football for Canadians. The World Cup is an amazing opportunity for us to do that.”, said Jonathan David, setting the entrance frame. The Lille striker wants to seize the opportunity offered to him and his country. A rare occasion since the Canucks had not participated in the great celebration of world football since its only appearance in 1986. They had then not caused a sensation, losing three times, in particular during its first match against France. (0-1, goal from Papin), without managing to score a single goal. A time when only one of the selected was born (Atiba Hutchinson, 39, editor’s note).
And to new generation, new code. This time, the Canadians did not skimp to qualify, taking first place in the Concacaf zone, ahead of Mexico and the United States. If David brought his share (3 goals), what about his attacking partner Larin, top scorer with 4 goals. The two men will certainly be the ones to watch on the Belgian side, the first for his speed, his movements and his use of depth, the second for his surgical sense of goal, he who scored 14 times in 13 matches with the selection in 2021 . “The Canadian players will go deep, with speed. They are physically strong too”, has studied Wistel well. Indeed, the Canadians are in good shape and have had the good news of the recovery of Alphonso Davies. The Bayern Munich player has “overflown” the latest training according to John Herdman. “We are able to field the best team possible. We are entering an interesting period. The clouds above us have dissipated”, rejoices the coach who also recovers the experienced goalkeeper Borjan hit in the abdomen and the promising Eustaquio victim of a blow in training and essential in the North American midfield. For this return to the World Cup, the Canucks will want to show that they deserve their place and will only be more dangerous for aging Belgians.
The meeting between Belgium and Canada in Group F of the World Cup should begin around 8 p.m., on the side of the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Doha.
The match between Belgium and Canada counting for the first day of the group stage of the World Cup will be broadcast unencrypted on TF1 and on beIN SPORTS 1, which holds all the broadcasting rights for the competition.
The meeting between Kevin De Bruyne’s Belgium and Jonathan David’s Canada will be available for streaming on the MyTF1 and MyCanal platforms.
- BetClic: Belgium: 1.50 / Draw: 4.50 / Canada: 6.60
- Sports bets: Belgium: 1.50 / Draw: 4.50 / Canada: 6.75
- Winamax: Belgium: 1.50 / Draw: 4.50 / Canada: 6.75