Belgium On Right Track For Russia, Panama Blow

Romelu Lukaku was on the scoresheet in Brussels (Picture source Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images)

Romelu Lukaku scored his first goal since 18 April to give Belgium a huge boost ahead of the World Cup.

The Manchester United man, his country’s record goalscorer, suffered an ankle injury late in the 2017/18 campaign and only appeared in the FA Cup Final as a second-half substitute.

And after playing for 45 minutes of the goalless draw with Portugal he set Roberto Martinez’s side on the way to a 3-0 victory over an Egypt side who were without Mo Salah.

Skipper Eden Hazard also struck before half-time in Brussels with Marouane Fellaini, subject of recent speculation that he is to leave Old Trafford for Arsenal, completing the scoring in stoppage-time.

Egypt provided limited threat and will be resting their hopes of going beyond the group phase in Russia on Salah recovering sufficiently from the shoulder injury picked up in the Champions League Final.

Meanwhile Belgium’s first World Cup opponents, Panama, went down 1-0 in Norway in their final warm-up friendly ahead of what will be their first finals appearance.

To compound the bad news, midfielder Alberto Quintero will miss the tournament after picking up a metatarsal injury, having come on at half-time in the game. Ricardo Avila of Belgian club Gent has already been called up as his replacement.


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