Belgium makes a comeback and defeats Algeria 2 – 1 despite the latter’s early lead in the game Tuesday at Estadio Mineirao in Belo Horizonte.
Algeria dominated the first half of the match, pushing off every Belgian attempt on taking a score. Sofiane Feghouli grabs an opportunity to bury a penalty kick during the 25 – minute mark, taking the lead for Algeria 1 – 0.
Despite Belgium’s dominance over possession which reached 65%, they had difficulty penetrating through the tough defenses of Algeria.
However, Belgium made adjustments and went for a comeback during the second half of the match. The team put in substitutes Marouanne Fellaini and Dries Mertens, which turned the tide of the game. They put Belgium on the offensive during the second half of the match, and attempted for equalizers.
The match is soon tied as Marouanne Fellaini buries a header towards the center, assisted by Kevin De Bruyne’s cross from the left during the 70 – minute mark.
Algeria is soon outscored when Belgium took another goal during the 80 – minute mark. Dries Mertens delivers a solid strike from Eden Hazard’s play from the left, taking Belgium on the lead at 2 – 1 just right before the end of the match.
Coach Mark Wilmots of Belgium notes BBC Sports: “We stayed calm after doing a small mistake in the first half. We got a new momentum. We saw that Algeria were getting more and more tired. At half-time people were a bit down, but I said ‘don’t worry, we will score and we will change totally the match’.”
On the other hand, Vahid Halilhodzic laments on the result of the match. Saj Chowdhury quotes the coach at BBC Sports: “It’s a major disappointment. I would have liked to have a couple of tougher and more resilient players to resist their attacks but I don’t have much of a choice.
Belgium will meet Russia, who was tied by Korea at 1-1, at Estadio Jornalista Mario Filho, Rio de Janeiro. On the other hand, Algeria will face Korea at Estadio Beira-Rio. Both matches will be held on Sunday.