10 things we learnt from Belgium-Spain

By | September 2, 2016

1. Roberto Martinez has a lot of work to do but he has to be given time. Marc Wilmots made no progress with the team in the last two years and there had to be change.

2. Thierry Henry will be useful if he can find a way of making his 150 million euro strike force effective on the international scene.

3. There has been no ‘Martinez effect’ that sometimes happens when players try to impress the new coach.

4. It is a concern that Belgium were completely outplayed in the 30 minutes before half time but Martinez failed to make any adjustments in personnel or tactically that changed any aspects of the game in the second half.

5. Eden Hazard does not have the mentality of a captain, i.e. Someone who can inspire the troops.

6. Kevin De Bruyne’s form with the national team is a major cause for concern. He is twice the player at club level and never appears to enjoy international football.

7. Last night’s performance was a continuation of the Euros. Apart from De Bruyne, players like Carrasco, Nainggolan and Hazard are not living up to their club reputations.

8. Jordan Lukaku is not an international footballer, he is still someone learning his trade.

9. The absence of a Dutch speaker on the main coaching staff (and only Henry speaks French) could become problematic, especially when things are not going well. Over half of squad are native Dutch speakers.

10. We had confirmation that the FIFA rankings are outrageous. Belgium currently ranked second and Spain eighth. Go figure.

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