The members of Belgium’s World Cup squad have long been touted as the country’s “golden generation.” They arrive at Qatar ranked No. 2 in the FIFA rankings and hope to fulfill their promise and improve on their third-place finish at Russia in 2018—their best result to date. With Premier League royalty like Kevin De Bruyne, Brighton’s plucky Leandro Trossard, Inter Milan striker Romelu Lukaku, and Read Madrid’s Eden Hazard in the squad, Roberto Martinez’s men should be ready to prove their credentials as tournament dark horses among favorites like Brazil, Spain, France, and Germany. Group F rivals Croatia could challenge them for top spot, but the Red Devils should have enough quality to get the job done against Canada and Morocco.
Final 26-man Belgium World Cup 2022 roster
|Goalkeeper||Thibaut Courtois||Real Madrid (SPA)||30||97|
|Goalkeeper||Simon Mignolet||Club Brugge (BEL)||34||35|
|Goalkeeper||Koen Casteels||Wolfsburg (GER)||30||4|
|Defender||Toby Alderweireld||Royal Antwerp (BEL)||33||124|
|Defender||Arthur Theate||Stade Rennes (FRA)||22||4|
|Defender||Wout Faes||Leicester City (ENG)||24||1|
|Defender||Jan Vertonghen||Anderlecht (BEL)||35||142|
|Defender||Zeno Debast||Anderlecht (BEL)||18||3|
|Defender||Leander Dendoncker||Aston Villa (ENG)||27||29|
|Defender||Timothy Castagne||Leicester City (ENG)||26||26|
|Defender||Thomas Meunier||Borussia Dortmund (GER)||31||59|
|Midfielder||Kevin De Bruyne||Man City (ENG)||31||93|
|Midfielder||Hans Vanaken||Club Brugge (BEL)||30||23|
|Midfielder||Youri Tielemans||Leicester City (ENG)||25||55|
|Midfielder||Amadou Onana||Everton (ENG)||21||2|
|Midfielder||Axel Witsel||Atletico Madrid (SPA)||33||127|
|Midfielder||Thorgan Hazard||Borussia Dortmund (GER)||29||45|
|Forward||Romelu Lukaku||Inter Milan (ITA)||29||102|
|Forward||Michy Batshuayi||Fenerbahce (TUR)||29||48|
|Forward||Dries Mertens||Galatasaray (TUR)||35||107|
|Forward||Charles de Ketelaere||AC Milan (ITA)||21||10|
|Forward||Yannick Carrasco||Atletico Madrid (SPA)||29||60|
|Forward||Eden Hazard||Real Madrid (SPA)||31||123|
|Forward||Leandro Trossard||Brighton (ENG)||27||21|
|Forward||Lois Openda||Lens (FRA)||22||5|
|Forward||Jeremy Doku||Stade Rennes (FRA)||20||11|
Star players in the Belgium World Cup squad
When fit, Romelu Lukaku is the focal point of Belgium’s attack. Desite Eden Hazard’s so-so form for Real Madrid at times, he’s a star on the national team, which he also captains. Winger Leandro Trossard is having a standout year in the Premier League with Brighton and will hope to bring that form to Qatar, while Yannick Carrasco is another threat on the wings for the Red Devils. The man pulling all the strings in midfield remains Kevin De Bruyne, who is indispensable for his club side, Manchester City, and country.
Who is Belgium’s head coach?
Following coaching stints at various levels of the English game with Swansea, Wigan, and Everton, Roberto Martinez took up the helm of Belgium’s national team in 2016. The Spaniard is a former player who demands much from his squads and favors a possession-based style where his technical midfielders like Kevin De Bruyne can control the tempo of the game. Could this be the year Martinez helps the national team to fulfill the promise of the golden generation?
Belgium World Cup 2022 fixtures and match schedule
|Wed, Nov. 23||Belgium vs. Canada||2 p.m.||Ahmad Bin Ali|
|Sun, Nov. 27||Belgium vs. Morocco||8 a.m.||Al Thumama|
|Thurs, Dec. 1||Croatia vs. Belgium||10 a.m.||Ahmad Bin Ali|
Belgium vs. Canada
The Red Devils should back themselves to kickoff their World Cup campaign with three points in their Group F opener. Especially as Canada may be without its star wingback Alphonso Davies, who’s still battling a hamstring strain he picked up with Bayern Munich. The downside is they’ll have to do it without the injured Romelu Lukaku.
Belgium vs. Morocco
The fullback duo of Bayern Munich’s Noussair Mazraoui and PSG’s Achraf Hakimi offer Morocco great threat down the flanks. Paired with Chelsea’s Hakim Ziyech in the midfield, Belgium certainly has to be careful not to underestimate the Moroccans. Both teams could be fruitful in front of goal, but we’d bank on the Red Devils to come out on top after 90 minutes.
Croatia vs. Belgium
Belgium hopes to have its big man upfront fit and firing for this crucial Group F clash that could determine who tops the group and gets a more favorable draw in the Round of 16. Belgium will also have to work hard to try and contain Spurs winger Ivan Perišić and central midfielder Luka Modrić—two experienced operators and deadly in front of goal.
Belgium national team strengths & weaknesses
Belgium will want to improve on their third-place finish at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, which will require getting the most from their best players. The Red Devils have brought a solid squad to Qatar, boasting both experienced veterans forged in Europe’s best leagues and several World Cup and European Championship tournaments and a mix of more youthful exuberance to add spark when needed late in the game.
Head coach Roberto Martinez will want Romelu Lukaku back fit for Belgium’s wide players and midfielders to feed chances to, while Eden Hazard’s lack of playing time at Real Madrid isn’t too much of a concern if he’s fresh for the World Cup. You can’t heap enough praise on Kevin De Bruyne for the way he engineers success at Manchester City, and you expect the Belgian to do the same in Qatar. The experience of Thibaut Courtois in goal and Toby Alderweireld anchoring their defense will be crucial to keeping control of the scoreline and allowing the attacking players the freedom to do damage at the other end.
Belgium was once an underdog at international tournaments, overlooked for the flair of Brazil or Germany’s sheer dominance. But no longer. The stars are there to see, and opposition teams will have pored over the footage to find their Achilles’ heel. If they have one, it might be Martinez’s over-reliance on the tried-and-trusted old guard: 11 out of the 26 players are over 30 years old now. And Belgium likes to play a high line, a risky gamble for certain players just past their prime years. The group games will show whether this group of players can be greater than the sum of its parts or whether it shows old flaws and an inability to shift tactics when the going gets tough.
How to watch the Belgium World Cup team for free from anywhere?
Belgium World Cup 2022 odds
The odds for Belgium to win the 2022 World Cup is +1600, according to Odds Shark. Here are the latest 2022 FIFA World Cup odds for all major countries:
FAQ: Belgium 2022 World Cup squad
How many times did Belgium win the World Cup?
Despite a consistently high place in the FIFA rankings, Belgium has never actually gone all the way to win the FIFA World Cup. The national team’s best finish in the World Cup to date is third, when it beat England 2-0 at the Russia 2018 tournament, thanks to goals from Thomas Meunier and Eden Hazard. Prior to that, Belgium’s highest finish was fourth at the 1986 World Cup competition in Mexico.
How many times has Belgium been in the World Cup?
Belgium has competed at 14 FIFA World Cups, including the 2022 tournament in Qatar.
How is Belgium good at football?
Belgium finished third at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, a fitting conclusion to a solid tournament for one of Europe’s smaller footballing nations. Yet, there’s always been a sense of underachievement for such a talented bunch of individuals—who count among them Premier League winners, Serie A champions, and several top Champions League stars. Dubbed the Golden Generation, there’s plenty of luster to this bunch of lads. They’ll hope to fulfill that promise in Qatar and avoid an embarrassingly early exit that could tarnish their sterling reputations.