Nations League: Kevin De Bruyne leads Belgium to victory over Wales | Football news


Kevin De Bruyne scored one goal and scored the other for Belgium to secure a rare 2-1 win over Wales in Brussels and keep alive the Red Devils’ slim chance of reaching the Nations League semi-finals. De Bruyne claimed before the match that he was “bored” to play against Wales on the international stage, but Belgium had won just two of the sides’ eight previous encounters in the past 10 years.

That included a famous victory for the Welsh in the Euro 2016 quarter-finals, but there was no repeat for the exhausted visitors on Thursday.

Gareth Bale was left on the bench by Rob Page with one eye on managing his fitness for their World Cup, while Aaron Ramsey and Ben Davies missed out through injury.

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Belgium also missed one of their key men in Romelu Lukaku, but Michy Batshuayi stepped in to replace the Inter Milan striker to continue his excellent score at international level.

Batshuayi took care of the opening goal, as his pass was brilliantly picked in the bottom corner by De Bruyne in the 10th minute.

The Manchester City midfielder then hit the post and Batshuayi missed a great opportunity as Wales struggled to contain the waves of Belgian attacks.

The same two players scored the second goal eight minutes before half-time, as this time De Bruyne’s teasing cross saw Batshuayi net his 26th international goal in 46 appearances.

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To their credit, Wales didn’t give up and got back into the game, thanks in large part to the impressive Brennan Johnson.

The rising run and cross of the Nottingham Forest forward saw Kieffer Moore halve the deficit five minutes into the second half.

Moore then gave way to Bale for the final 25 minutes, but the only impact the LA Galaxy star made was that he was booked hard for taking his protests against an overturned penalty for Belgium.

Turkish referee Ali Palabiyik erroneously pointed to the spot when Joe Morrell produced a perfectly timed tackle on De Bruyne in the area.

That decision was reversed after a VAR review and Palabiyik made another extremely hard decision when Belgian coach Roberto Martinez was sent off the sidelines too late for wasting time.

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But the team that was second in the world rankings held out well and was three points behind the Netherlands at the top of Group A4.

Martinez’s men will have to win by at least three goals at the meeting in Amsterdam on Sunday to advance to the last four.


Wales must beat Poland in Cardiff in their final game to avoid relegation to League B of the Nations League.

(This story was not edited by UK Time News staff and was generated automatically Platforms.)

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