Gareth Southgate: England players fully behind my Belgium decisions


"Yeah I'm very pleased with that, to score a great goal against a great opponent", Januzaj said in the game's post-match press conference. "But in the past in England I had a lot of criticism and now I wanted to show the people that I am here, so you know I am very happy with that".

England manager Gareth Southgate is poised to give Eric Dier his first start in this World Cup, while Ruben Loftus-Cheek who is a booking away from suspension and Dele Alli who suffered a muscle problem against Tunisia are unlikely to feature against Belgium.

In the other match in Group G, Tunisia notched their first win at a World Cup for 40 years, beating debutants Panama 2-1 to leave Russian Federation on a high.

Hello and welcome to our coverage of the game nearly every football fan has been looking forward to, England vs Belgium.

"If we play the same way as we did in the first two matches, then we'll win the game against Colombia".

England suffered their first World Cup defeat as they were beaten by Belgium to finish second in Group G.

Adnan Januzaj's goal - The game at times may have lacked quality, but one moment that definitely did not was Adnan Januzaj's brilliant goal.

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So, if the two were to play to draw, England could still find a way to "lose" the group by picking up three yellow cards. Senegal on Thursday, Group H looks set to provide a thrilling finale to the group stage of the tournament.

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Southgate rested a cluster of players who had been involved in wins against Tunisia and Panama in England´s opening two games in Russian Federation, including star striker Harry Kane.

Rashford dipped a free kick over the crossbar and Fellaini's block flew past the upright as England chased an equaliser, but it was Belgium who came closest to a second as Pickford parried a long-range drive from substitute Dries Mertens late on. Both teams had already won their two games and assured themselves of passage into the round-of-16.

"The so-called golden generation wasn't playing today", he said, after leaving the likes of Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne on the bench.

Colombia coach Jose Pekerman said he was relieved his team - who reached the quarter-finals in Brazil in 2014 - were going through from a tough group.

England and Belgium still have plenty left in the tank for the knock-out stages but how much will the group games have taken out of their rivals? Equally, they had one big chance and took it. We feel we're a team who are improving.

"We think that we need to keep winning football matches and we want to breed a mentality that everybody in our squad consistently wants to win", he said in his pre-match press conference. If they lose then this game will be viewed as the night when vital momentum was lost. The last-16 ties start Saturday, with France taking on Argentina in Kazan and Uruguay facing Cristiano Ronaldo´s Portugal in Sochi. The former Manchester United winger scored the victor early in the second half with a lovely skill move and finish, as the Red Devils remained ideal with nine points from three matches.