Belgium manager Roberto Martinez has officially confirmed the final 23-man squad for this month’s World Cup campaign in Russia.
Crystal Palace striker Christian Benteke has been left out, while Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany has been named in the squad, although he picked up an injury last weekend.
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Eigentlich wollte Belgien-Coach #RobertoMartinez erst am Montag seinen Kader für die #WM2018 bekannt geben. In einem TV-Beitrag war jetzt aber zu sehen, wie die mit Namen versehenen Matratzen nach Russland transportiert wurden. Dem Bericht zufolge fehlten die Schlafgelegenheiten für #LeanderDendoncker, #JordanLukaku, #MatzSels, #AdnanJanuzaj und #ChristianKabasele. Zufall?
“Christian Benteke has been the toughest decision,” Martinez said.
“I told him he has done everything he could have done in the camp. He has been an impressive figure.”
“I think the performance he showed against Portugal shows you that he is in a good moment and that’s been the toughest decision from a football point of view.”
“The decision is for the balance of the squad and we want to take two number nines, just because of what we’re going to need in terms of the shape and the balance of the squad.”
“That’s why Adnan Januzaj has got a really good opportunity to bring his freshness and help us in certain roles in attacking play.”
Belgium confirmed squad:
Goalkeepers: Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea); Simon Mignolet (Liverpool); Koen Casteels (VfL Wolfsburg).
Defenders: Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham); Thomas Meunier (Paris Saint-Germain), Thomas Vermaelen (Barcelona); Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham); Dedryck Boyata (Celtic), Vincent Kompany (Manchester City).
Midfielders: Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United); Axel Witsel (Tianjin Quanjian); Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City); Eden Hazard (Chelsea); Nacer Chadli (West Bromwich Albion); Leander Dendoncker (Anderlecht); Thorgan Hazard (Borussia Moenchengladbach); Youri Tielemans (Monaco); Mousa Dembele (Tottenham Hotspur).
Forwards: Michy Batshuayi (Chelsea/Dortmund); Yannick Carrasco (Dalian Yifang); Adnan Januzaj (Real Sociedad); Romelu Lukaku (Manchester United); Dries Mertens (Napoli).
Belgium will be in Group G where they will be alongside the England, Panama and Tunisia.
The Red Devils will begin the campaign against Panama on June 18.