Belgium crash out of World Cup after goalless draw with Croatia | Qatar World Cup 2022 News

Croatia advance to the final 16 from Group F alongside Morocco after stalemate.

Belgium have crashed out of the World Cup following a 0-0 draw with Croatia, marking a bitter finish for the nation’s so-called “Golden Technology” of stars.

Coach Roberto Martinez’s aspect, ranked the second-best on this planet by FIFA, failed to search out any fluency in Thursday’s conflict on the Ahmad bin Ali Stadium and their determined second-half makes an attempt to interrupt the impasse in the end got here to nothing.

Neither aspect had a shot on course in a dour first half and Belgium introduced on striker Romelu Lukaku on the break, however it was Croatia who sprang into life, with Marcelo Brozovic and Luka Modric drawing saves from Thibaut Courtois in fast succession.

Lukaku then rattled the submit with a fierce shot from shut vary on the hour mark as Belgium pushed desperately for the aim that will ship them via.

He went on to waste a number of extra goalmouth alternatives because the clock ticked towards full-time, displaying an absence of match sharpness following a protracted interval out with damage.

The stalemate left the Pink Devils stranded in third place in Group F, with Croatia one spot above them and Morocco ending prime of the pile following their 2-1 win over Canada.

The 2018 runners-up will face the winners of Group E – which may very well be Spain, Japan or Costa Rica – on Monday.

Morocco, who’ve reached the knockout levels for the primary time since 1986, will play the runners-up from Group E, which additionally contains four-time champions Germany, the next day.

Croatia's Luka Modric celebrates with teammates after the match as Croatia qualify for the knockout stages
Croatia’s Luka Modric celebrates qualifying for the final 16 along with his teammates [John Sibley/Reuters]

‘Golden technology’s disappointing conclusion

Belgium’s “Golden Technology” – now that includes six gamers with greater than 100 appearances – is about to separate up with the World Cup semifinal look in 2018 as its peak.

Not like their spectacular exhibiting 4 years in the past in Russia, The Pink Devils managed only one aim on this 12 months’s match in a lucky opening 1-0 win over Canada.

In a bid to spark his squad to life, Martinez dropped captain Eden Hazard to the bench as one among 4 adjustments to the aspect on Thursday which additionally noticed Leandro Trossard and Dries Mertens begin for the primary time in Qatar.

However their build-up to the match was marred by rumours of infighting between senior gamers in the course of the match – studies Martinez had dismissed as “pretend information”.

The 49-year-old, who has been in cost for greater than six years, was requested after the sport if he’ll stay as coach within the wake of his aspect’s forgetful marketing campaign.

“Now, just isn’t the second [to discuss that],” he answered.

World Cup 2022: Germany vs Costa Rica match preview | Qatar World Cup 2022 News

Hansi Flick’s aspect have to beat Costa Rica to face an opportunity of qualifying for the Spherical of 16.

Who: Germany vs Costa Rica, Group E

The place: Al Bayt Stadium

When: Thursday, December 1, 10pm (19:00 GMT)

FIFA rankings: Germany (11), Costa Rica (31)

Wounded Germany could have their backs to the wall once they tackle Costa Rica of their remaining World Cup Group E match on Thursday and know they need to bag their first win of the event, ideally by a big margin, to have any possibilities of advancing.

The Germans are backside of the group having gained just one level from their two matches to date, elevating the spectre of one other first-round exit following their early elimination in Russia 4 years in the past.

Even victory over the Costa Ricans is probably not sufficient, and Germany can be seeking to Spain to inflict defeat on Japan to open the door to the subsequent spherical. A draw between Spain and Japan — or a win for Japan — would convey purpose distinction into play, if Germany does defeat Costa Rica.

Spain high the group on 4 factors forward of Japan and Costa Rica, each on three.

Scoring has not been a powerful level for German coach Hansi Flick’s staff however centre ahead Niclas Fuellkrug’s wonderful run for membership and nation in current months has improved their prospects. The 29-year-old, an unlikely addition to the squad previous to the event, snatched a late equaliser in opposition to Spain after approaching in its place to maintain their hopes alive going into the ultimate group match.

germany
Niclas Fullkrug got here off the bench to equalise for Germany in opposition to Spain [Matthew Childs/Reuters]

The burly striker is now a severe choice to guide the road on Thursday with many German pundits and followers demanding he begin.

Nevertheless, assistant coach Marcus Sorg dampened expectations over Fuellkrug, saying he was “not a cure-all” for the staff’s issues.

“We have now to see what impact which participant has at any given time,” Sorg mentioned. “We want a sure construction, stability and safety. Safety comes with consistency.”

No matter line-up Germany go together with, they know their activity is to protect what stays of their as soon as highly effective event status, having did not win the primary two matches in a World Cup group for the primary time.

Germany’s opponents on Thursday haven’t had a good time of it both — Costa Rica have had only one shot on course of their two matches.

Nonetheless, that shot resulted within the purpose that introduced them victory over Japan and saved their qualification hopes alive. In the event that they defeat Germany and Spain beat Japan, they may end second within the group. It might be some story for a staff that misplaced its first recreation 7-0 to make it to the Spherical of 16.