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England v Belgium World Cup Preview and Predictions - Rivals battle for top spot in Group G

Gary Emmerson 27 Jun 2018
  • A draw would mean Fair Play records or lots deciding the group winner
  • England and Belgium are the joint highest scorers in the tournament
  • Both sides are on long unbeaten runs (Belgium 21 games, England 12 games)

England and Belgium meet in a battle to secure top spot in World Cup Group G when they go head-to-head at Kaliningrad Stadium on Thursday (Friday AEST).

England v Belgium kicks off at 04.00am AEST on Friday. The game will be broadcast on SBS in Australia. 

Prediction


Match Preview


England and Belgium meet in an intriguing clash to finish their World Cup Group G campaigns with top spot at stake for the winner when they meet in Kaliningrad.

After victories over Panama and Tunisia for both sides, they have already secured places in the Round of 16 and now all that is left to be decided is who tops the standings and who qualifies as runners-up.

England beat Tunisia 2-1 with a late goal from Harry Kane before demolishing Panama 6-1. Belgium were 3-0 winners over Panama before recording an entertaining 5-2 victory over Tunisia.

That means both sides are locked level on goal difference, goals scored and goals conceded and, should this one end in a draw, then fair play records will be used to determine the group winner. England currently have two yellows, to Belgium's three. If that is still level, lots will be drawn.

It will Japan, Senegal or Colombia who await in the Round of 16 depending how Group H finishes before this game kicks off, but some think the deeper route into the tournament means finishing runners-up in Group G could be more beneficial for Belgium and England.

I don't think either of the two sides will be playing to lose, although changes are likely to save players for the knockout stages. Both have impressed with goals at the finals and this one might well be more entertaining than some think.

England have looked an impressive unit and there are the value bet with Belgium the more likely to field a so-called weakened side, but expect there to be goals again.

Stats


  • A draw would mean Fair Play records or lots deciding the group winner
  • England and Belgium are the joint highest scorers in the tournament
  • Both sides are on long unbeaten runs (Belgium 21 games, England 12 games)

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England v Belgium World Cup Preview and Predictions - Rivals battle for top spot in Group G

England and Belgium meet in a battle to secure top spot in World Cup Group G when they go head-to-head at Kaliningrad Stadium.

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