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Belgium – Saudi Arabia

Belgium are one of the few teams to be limiting themselves to just a single friendly during this international break, and this will be the last opportunity for Roberto Martinez to make any decisions about his final World Cup squad before they head over to Russia.

To be fair, they’re not exactly short on quality. The likes of Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku, Dries Mertens, Radja Nainggolan, Mousa Dembele, Jan Vertonghen, and Vincent Kompany are all present in the squad, with the only notable absentee here being the injured Thibaut Courtois. This is undoubtedly a world class squad, but it’s one that failed to deliver in their last major tournament.

They went into Euro 2016 as one of the favourites to lift the trophy, but in the end they were dumped out at the quarter final stage against Wales. Roberto Martinez was appointed soon after, and defeat to Spain in his first outing caused speculation to flare up. Fortunately for him, that speculation has died down now.

Belgium qualified for the World Cup with flying colours, collecting 28 points from a possible 30 in their group and finishing nine points ahead of Greece. Admittedly it was a fairly easy group, but they scored 43 goals in their ten games and dealt with every one of them professionally and clinically.

Saudi Arabia will also be making their way to Russia, but their hopes of lifting the famous trophy are much more far fetched. They qualified second in their group behind Japan and have since played a host of friendlies either side of the Gulf Cup of Nations.

Overall, the visitors have won two, drawn two, and lost four of their eight games since qualifying ended. Their two victories have been against the likes of Kuwait and Moldova, so not many are giving them a fighting chance here.

We’re not either. Belgium are devastating going forward, and they rarely sit back and coast when they’re in the lead. Their 9-0 battering of Gibraltar last August is testament to that, and the fact they have scored at least three goals in five of their last eight home games means this could be another thrashing. Saudi Arabia’s last away game ended 4-1 to Iraq in February, so we think a Belgium Over 2.5 Team Goals bet looks a great shout alongside a 4-0 correct score predictions.

Head To Head

Belgium and Saudi Arabia have each won one and lost one of their two meetings, with the first taking place in the 1994 World Cup and the most recent being a 2006 friendly.

Belgium vs Saudi Arabia Stats

  • Belgium averaged 4.3 goals per game during World Cup qualification.
  • The hosts have scored at least three goals in 63% of their last eight home games.
  • During these eight games, they have averaged four goals per game.

Belgium Team News

Chelsea’s Thibaut Courtois has withdrawn from the squad due to injury, with Simon Mignolet set to start between the sticks. Most of the other big guns are present, with Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku, and Dries Mertens providing a deadly attacking trio ahead of the likes of Mousa Dembele, Kevin de Bruyne, Radja Nainggolan, Jan Vertonghen, and Vincent Kompany,

Saudi Arabia Team News

Promising midfielder Fahad Al-Muwallad is one of just three members of the squad who ply their trade outside of Saudi Arabia, with the Levante midfielder based in Spain alongside Villarreal’s Salem Al-Dawsari and Leganes’ Yahya Al-Shehri. Striker Mohammad Al-Sahlawi is the top scorer in the squad with 28 goals in just 35 appearances.

Belgium vs Saudi Arabia Predictions

Belgium Over 2.5 Team Goals

Correct Score Prediction

Belgium 4-0
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