Better late than never.
Coming back from a 12-year hiatus from the World Cup scene, the Red Devils of Belgium kicked off their ‘golden age’ of play with a win against Algeria, Tuesday, at the Belo Horizonte’s Estadio Mineirao.
However, the Algerians were actually really good too with their performance today. It was them who displayed a more spectacular fight during the first stages of the game.
In fact, it was them who first scored a goal for the match. It came from the penalty spot, delivered by Sofiane Feghouli, just 25 minutes after the opening. It was their first goal in the World Cup since 1986. Twenty-eight years.
However, as the game progressed, Algeria seemed to have relaxed too much, and forgot they were playing against the so-called dark horses of the tournament. They played with less stellar, but Belgium looked like they weren’t much of a favourite either.
The Belgium team worried of the goal, and they tried, but they were out of creativity and will power. They started to look like they are going to suffer the fate much like of the England team.
And that worried the Belgian coach, Marc Wilmots of course. The first half ended, yet his team of supposed to be superstar players were not even able to equalize the score boards.
So, realizing that his team weren’t living up to his expectations, he decides to shuffle his line-up. Then came Marouane Fellaini and Dries Martens- their saving grace.
However, it was another sub, Divock Origi, who tried to make the team’s first goal. But his efforts were no match to goal keeper Rais Mbolhi.
With only twenty minutes left on the clock, the Belgium were more desperate than ever. It was Fellaini who evened out the score, as he exerted effort for an overhead goal.
But it was Mertens who scored the second point. He snatched the ball from Eden Hazard, quickly made an unstoppable kick that tore through the opponent’s net.
And that is how the win was snatched from the Algerians, with ten minutes left on the clock.