In the latest Belgium news, boss Roberto Martinez believes the future is bright for his team despite their World Cup semi-final defeat to France on Tuesday.
The Red Devils were bidding to reach their first ever World Cup final and they came into Tuesday’s showdown with the French in confident mood after their quarter-final victory over Brazil, but they were ultimately undone by Samuel Umtiti’s second-half header.
Belgium will now have to dust themselves down for Saturday’s third-place play-off against either England or Croatia and that match could well be the last international game for some of Martinez’ team, as seven of his 23-man squad are in their 30s.
However, Martinez has been quick to play down suggestions that Belgium’s golden generation have missed their best opportunity to win a major tournament, as he believes the future is bright for the country, claiming there are a number of young players starting to come through.
“Belgian football has got a wealth of young talent coming through,” Martinez said. “As it happens in any big tournament, we need to look at the younger generation and try to become stronger from tournament to tournament.”
The former Everton and Wigan boss believes it is too early to fully assess his side’s World Cup performance, although after signing a new two-year contract in May, he has already turned one eye to Euro 2020, a tournament that Belgium are priced at 8/1 to win with bet365.
“It’s too early to make any assessment for the tournament,” he added. “We need to focus on the final game and fight for third place. Then we’ll regroup.
“In my role I’ve got the eyes into Euro 2020 so it’s not the right moment to make an assessment just yet.”