The Red Devils have gained momentum after a false start (loss to Italy). The 4-0 victory against Hungary gives The Red Devils even more confidence in a good outcome, but that is calculated outside of Wales. The Welshman reached the quarterfinals with an exciting victory over Northern Ireland. The bookmakers are taking sides with the Belgians. Who do you choose?
Thomas Vermaelen suspended
A blemish on the reputation of the Belgian triumphal procession is the suspension of ex-Ajax player Thomas Vermaelen. The defender, who now plays for FC Barcelona, took his second yellow card against Hungary and is therefore out for the quarterfinals. Toby Alderweireld (also a former Ajax player) will now probably get Jan Vertonghen next to him in the match against Wales. Vertonghen also played for Ajax in the past. According to Alderweireld, he is ready for his debut at this European Championship: “If the coach does indeed choose to post Vertonghen next to me in the match against Wales, then I am convinced that Jan has the qualities to fill that position properly,” he tells NOS. Alderweireld sees the national team of Belgium get stronger every game and draws confidence from that for next Friday’s game: “We are on an upward trend, and we have to keep it that way.”
Great Hazard: “We hope for even better dreams.”
Eden Hazard (Chelsea) started – just like his teammates – somewhat dull at this European Championship, but played the stars of heaven against Hungary. Hazard dares to look beyond Wales and counts on the support of the Belgian public: “We hope for even better dreams. We are now in the quarterfinals, Friday in Lille (Lille, ed.). That is close to us, so I hope to see many Belgians there!”
In addition to Hazard, the last match especially excelled the substitutes for Belgium. One of these is Atletico Madrid forward Carrasco: “We know that we are not eleven, but with a total score of 23. I don’t have to prove anything, but I do have to take my chances. I did that last match, but now we mainly have to look at the next match. Lille is close to home, so there will be more supporters than there normally are already present at our duels.”
Wales: “Bogeyman of Belgium”
In the qualifying series, the Belgians had to be defeated twice against Wales, also known as the “bogeyman of Belgium”. A draw and defeat resulted. Outstanding there: Gareth Bale. “We will also continue to fight for it in the quarterfinals,” Bale told the Belgian press.
Coleman: “He’s a fantastic player”.
Wales coach Cris Coleman does not intend to change his selection before the quarterfinals against Belgium, to contain the danger of Hazard. “We’ve dealt with him before. We are not going to make special plans for one player. We are familiar with where he likes to attack and which positions he likes to take up. But just because we know that doesn’t mean we can stop him at any time,” says Coleman. “They have a good team, but we don’t have to fear.”