Play as never and lose as ever. This maxim is often used for both Belgium and Mexico, which open on Friday, November 10, a series of friendly matches aimed at the dispute of the World Cup of Russia of 2018. The confrontation, which begins scheduled for 5:45 pm ( time of Brasília) at the King Baudouin stadium in Brussels, Belgium.
Belgium’s recent performance
There is no doubt that the current generation of players is the best in Belgian football history. This group, whose highlight is Eden Hazard, but also includes names like Kevin De Bruine and Romelu Lukaku, has produced some great displays, placed the selection in the main competitions, however, when the disputes are reduced, they can not make the difference.
It was like that, at the World Cup in Brazil in 2018, and at Euro2016, which was played in France. Once you delight analysts and fans, the challenge now is to produce more meaningful results. For the Belgians who have already participated in 12 world championships, that means getting a better place than the fourth place achieved in the 1986 World Cup, played on Mexican soil.
The experience of the recent failures may have given the maturity enough for the Belgian national team to take that step forward. Participation in the European qualifiers was convincing. The team easily reached the vacant spot for the Russian World Cup by adding 28 points (nine wins and a draw) of the possible 30. He got the first place in Group H leaving the Greeks, runners-up, nine points away.
Offensive power was the highlight of the campaign. The Belgians scored 43 goals. It was the best index in this area next to Germany, who scored the same number of goals in ten matches, averaging more than four in a duel.
Of breaking, the selection of Belgium still defends an invincibility that lasts more than a year. The most recent defeat happened on 1 September 2016 when they took 2 to 0 of Spain. Since then, in 13 matches, including friendlies and official games, were ten wins and three draws.
British coach Roberto Martinez has called the following players for the friendly double round, which will be completed with the match against Japan on 14 June: Courtois (Chelsea), Mignolet (Liverpool), Sels (Anderlecht), Casteels (Wolfsburg); Boyata (Celtic), Dendoncker (Anderlecht), Kabasele (Watford), Jordan Lukaku (Lazio), Meunier (Paris Saint-Germain), Vermaelen (Barcelona), Vertonghen (Tottenham); Chadli (West Bromwich), De Bruyne (Manchester City), Defour (Burnley), Dembele (Tottenham), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Thorgan Hazard (Borussia Monchengladbach), Januzaj (Real Sociedad), Nainggolan ), Mirallas (Everton), Tielemans (Monaco), Witsel (Tianjin Quanjian); Michy Batshuayi (Chelsea), Romelu Lukaku (Manchester United), Origi (Wolfsburg) Depoitre (Huddersfield)
The current form of Mexico
The Mexican tradition in the world is even greater than that of the Belgians. There were 16 participations. The results, however, are more frustrating. Two appearances in the quarterfinals were the maximum reached. This happened in the disputes that were based in Mexico, in 1970 and 1986.
Owner of a national league driven by millionaire investments, Mexican football is based on technique and offensive stance that often ends up being undermined by the athletes’ lack of dedication to defensive care.
To look for this balance in a country that, like Brazil, is passionate about soccer, brings crises and constant technical changes. The ball of the time in command of the team is the Colombian Juan Carlos Osorio, well known of the Brazilian fan for his passage in São Paulo.
He lived moments of euphoria and depression. The big failure was a 7-0 defeat that the Mexicans took from Chile when they participated in the 2016 Copa America in the USA. The qualifiers, however, were an admiring sea for the coach.
Playing against the three vacancies offered to the countries of Central and North America, the Mexicans made their debut in the fourth phase of the qualifiers. In a group that still had Honduras, Canada and El Salvador, they obtained the first place with absentee accumulating 16 (five victories and a tie) of 18 possible points. They scored 13 goals and only one.
The ride continued on the decisive hexagonal. Mexico secured the preliminary classification and had 21 points (six wins, three draws and one loss). They were five more than Costa Rica, second placed.
In addition to Belgium, Mexico will face Poland on the 13th of this friendly matchday. For the matches, Osorio, despite the great strength of the local league, chose to call the legion of ‘foreigners’ scattered around the world. Of the 26 invited, 16 work in other countries. The so-called athletes were:
Goalkeepers: Guillermo Ochoa (Standard Liege), Jesus Corona (Cruz Azul), Rodolfo Cota (Chivas)
Defenders: Carlos Salcedo (Frankfurt), Diego Reyes (Porto), Hector Moreno (Roma), Cesar Montes (Monterrey), Nestor Araujo (Santos Laguna), Hugo Ayala (Tigres), Jesus Galalrdo
Socks: Andres Guardado (Real Betis), Hector Herrera (Porto), Edson Alvarez (Club America), Jonathan dos Santos (LA Galaxy) Giovanni dos Santos (LA Galaxy), Omar Govea (Royel Excel Mouscron), Uriel Antuna
Attackers: Carlos Vela (Real Sociedad), Hirving Lozano (PSV), Jesus Corona (Porto), Javier Aquino (Tigers), Jurgen Damm
Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez (West Ham United), Raul Jimenez (Benfica), Oribe Peralta (Club America)
History of the matches Belgium vs Mexico
There were only six matches between Mexicans and Belgians. Mexico won three of them, one draw and two successes from Belgium.
In spite of the short retrospective, three of these games were realized in world-wide ones. The first of them in the 1970 World Cup. Acting at home, the Mexicans scored 1-0. Then at the 1986 World Cup in Spain, Mexico once again took the best 2-1. The Belgian revenge came in the Cup of the World of 1990, in Italy, when they made 3 to 0 in the Mexicans.
The style of acting of the two teams allows to imagine a duel quite open with the constant search for the goal. By having superior technical quality and acting in their domains, Belgium turns out to be the best betting option. Has a price of 1.44 in Bet365. Draw shows return of 4.50 and Mexican success yields 6.50 per invested real.