Still no Lukaku start and Hazard on bench for do-or-die Belgium clash

By Sports Desk December 01, 2022 244

Romelu Lukaku remained on the bench for Belgium's game against Croatia and was joined there by Red Devils captain Eden Hazard.

Belgium have endured a tumultuous week ahead of a World Cup match they almost certainly must win in order to advance from Group F.

Reports of a rift within the camp were dismissed as "fake news" by Roberto Martinez at his pre-match news conference.

In the same media briefing, Martinez said Lukaku – who returned from injury as a substitute in the defeat to Morocco – was "ready".

However, he added: "Now we have to see how much he can play."

The answer, it appears, was not enough to start, with Lukaku again left out of the XI and finding company on the bench in the form of skipper Hazard.

Michy Batshuayi, Lukaku's deputy, also made way as four changes saw an apparent move to a 3-4-3 formation.

Dries Mertens looked set to lead the line, supported by Yannick Carrasco and Leandro Trossard.

Croatia were unchanged after beating Canada 4-1 in their previous match to take control of the group heading into matchday three.

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Last modified on Thursday, 01 December 2022 10:30
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