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Sunday, 19 June 2016

Euro 2016:Belgium arrive, post match thoughts

Belgium opened their Euro 2016 campaign with a disappointing defeat to Italy. Yesterday they played Ireland, and there was a complete turn around. They won comfortably in the end leaving Ireland in a sticky situation, but can Belgium go on to win Euro 2016 from here and if so, what is going to help them.

1. Kevin De Bruyne
The Manchester City midfielder played incredibly well against Ireland. In my opinion for Belgium to be successful at this summers tournament they must rely on him to be a link up midfielder between the deeper midfielders and attackers. He has fantastic vision to play a pass and works hard for his team. For such a young player he shows such a maturity in knowing when to pick the correct pass through to the striker. He plays with such confidence that he doesn't mind trying to make risky passes, which often have great consequences, yet when they don't the Belgium midfield can work hard to get the ball back.

2.Strength in Depth
This brings me onto the next thing. Look at the strength in depth in the Belgium squad. Within their bench they have a £20 million plus rated striker in Marseilles Michy Batshuayi, Christian Benteke who Liverpool bought for over 30 million, as well as two huge Serie A players in Radja Nainggolan and Dries Mertens. Each of these names are players capable of coming onto the pitch and making an impact, as well as the strong first 11, it is no wonder that the team is so highly ranked. This allows the manager do greatly vary his tactics, with such a good squad being able to adapt to various positions, enabling them to change to meet the accordance of any opponent.

3. Fan Base
Obviously with the tournament being hosted in Neighbouring France. Belgium fans are in an ideal situation to make the trip to cheer their team on, and many have done so. This not only increases the passion of the players because they want to perform for their home nation and the fans who have made the journey, but knowing all of your supporters are there boosts morale between the players, as with every goal celebration, the players bond with the fans. They see how happy the fans are in them and this spurs them on

Overall it is evident that Belgium have a remarkably strong squad, capable if they keep putting in strong performances of winning this summers tournament. They must build upon their victory and take that momentum into the last group game if they wish to qualify, they will be wanting to win this won. I imagine their price of winning the tournament has now changed after a bumpy start, but if they work hard at it they could certainly win this tournament.

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