Our match prediction:
The friendly match between Belgium and Spain was initially supposed to be held in November 2015, but was ultimately called off due to heightened terrorist threat. The match will be a message of will and determination in addition to being the start of a new cycle for both national teams. Having been considered one of the firm favourites to win the European title this summer, Belgium ended their Euro 2016 journey in disappointing quarter-final defeat to tournament’s sensation Wales. A busy summer for the Red Devils ended up in Marc Wilmots being replaced by former Everton manager Roberto Martinez, who will be assisted by Arsenal and France legend Thierry Henry as Belgium head forth looking to open the 2018 World Cup qualifiers against Cyprus in Nicosia with three points. Spain’s Euro 2016 campaign was even more disappointing as it ended in the round of last 16. A 2-0 defeat to Italy marked the end of the road for La Roja and Vicente del Bosque as well. Julen Lopetegui inherited a quality team and is faced with a task of taking Spain back to world football’s top. First step in that direction is a game against a quality rival Belgium who are predicted to be a stern challenge to new La Roja manager. A draw is on the cards for both new faces on respected benches.
Highligted Player (Mirallas):
Kevin Mirallas is a Belgian footballer player born on 5th October 1987, who started showing his potential at a very young age. After coming through the youth ranks at Standard Liege, the forward moved to Lille in 2004 and he impressed playing for les Dogues, scoring 10 goals in 76 league appearances. The move to Saint Etienne did not work out as planned, but a two-year stint at Olympiakos that followed helped the player get his career back on track. Having scored 34 goals in 52 league outings, Mirallas decided to join Everton and he enjoyed a bright start to his career in England. However, just like the entire team, the highly rated footballer suffered a serious dip in form and he has struggled for playing time over the last couple of years. Mirallas has made over 50 appearances for the Belgium national team, representing the Red Devils at the 2014 World Cup and Eur0 2016 finals, scoring 9 goals in first 50 caps.
Highlighted Team (Spain):
Historically, Spain have been regarded as one of top sides on international stage, but they often struggled to live up to the billing. After reaching the semi-finals at the 1950 World Cup, La Furia Roja won the European Championship trophy on home soil in 1964, but little did they know that it would remain their only trophy for another 44 years. Following some disappointing showings, Spain finally returned to the biggest stage under Vicente Del Bosque, winning three straight trophies between 2008 and 2012, before crashing out in the group stage at the 2014 World Cup. La Furia Roja enjoyed plenty of success with their tiki-taka style of play, originally designed by Barcelona, with Vicente Del Bosque’s side packed with technically skilled players such as Xavi Hernandez, Xabi Alonso, Andres Iniesta, Cesc Fabregas and David Silva. Strikers Fernando Torres and David Villa also had a major role to play in those successes, but when it comes to their famous predecessors, the likes of Alfredo Di Stefano, Michel, Emilio Butrageno, Raul Gonzalez, Fernando Morientes and Fernando Hierro should not be forgotten.