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International Friendly: Belgium vs Costa Rica

England are fresh from a 2-0 victory over Costa Rica, but how will group rivals Belgium get on this week? The central American side will have a better idea than most of who is making it through that pool, as they’ve met all four teams since November.

They lost 2-1 to Panama in their final qualifier, and since then they’ve met Tunisia and the Three Lions. How will they get on in their final warm up friendly in Brussels this week?

All of Panama’s group G rivals have been using Costa Rica as their warm up. However, both sides managed to see off the Costa Ricans in their friendly clashes. Going by the prematch odds, Belgium should make it a clean sweep up Group G victories over Costa Rica.

Roberto Martinez has pulled off some impressive results in their opening two warm up matches, as they drew with European champions Portugal and hammered Egypt 3-0. Will that good form continue in their final game before they set off for Russia?

Belgium have impressed going forward, but they’re also looking good in defence. Their back three switch has given them much more balance, and that is clear from their results of late. They’ve kept a clean sheet in six of their last seven home games, including all of their last four.

They conceded just twice at home in the qualifiers, and we’re expecting more of the same here. Their talent in defence seems to be paying off finally, so we’re backing a tough night for Costa Rica’s forwards this week.

Belgium face off with a Costa Rica side who have lost to nil in four of their last five away trips. They’ve lost without scoring against both Tunisia and England’s second string last week, so Belgium should have little trouble recording a fifth straight home clean sheet. We’re backing a win to nil for the Red Devils in this game, while we’re also predicting a 2-0 win for Martinez’s side.

We think Romelu Lukaku will fire for Belgium this summer, as he’s been in fantastic form for his country. The forward has struck 11 goals in his last eight internationals, including one against Egypt last week.

We expect a comfortable win for the Red Devils against Costa Rica, and they should create plenty of chances. We’re backing Lukaku to score on Monday night, with the Man United forward well valued to bag a goal.


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