Why Belgium Failed To Beat Underdog Wales

By Obiweluozo Martins

The Belgian side are on their way home irrespective of the high profile talent of Eden Hazard, Kevin De Bruyne, Romelu Lukaku, Alex Witsel to name a few following a 3-1 thumping in the hands of the Bale inspired Wales.

 Many questions and opinions have been raised on how and why the Belgians were eliminated by the less fancied and talented Wales who only recently featured in a major tournament.

 On this note, we evaluate the points behind Belgium’s total surrender to Wales in the EURO 2016.


In a football match, good substitution are very important to winning games dependent on the quality and depth on the bench. The Belgium Coach Marc Walnuts made some wrong substitutions and the end produced resulted in total defeat. When you get the playing personnel wrong you are surely going to answer for it and really Marc Wilmots will be under scrutiny for the coming days following the exit of Belgium from the European Championship. Player like Divock Origi should have come on for Lukaku or be made to partner him in attack instead he was pulling out the Everton star and gradually eliminating his team from the tournament voluntary. What is the bases behind Yannick Ferreira-Carrasco substitution at half time for immobile, uncreative Maroune Fellaini who got no pace to add the game with potential talent like Dembele just only watching from the bench with so much dismay as Belgium exit the tournament when there campaign should have continued against Wales.


To win a tournament certain things, play a key role. The Belgium were never really tested in some of their games at EURO 2016 especially Hungary and when they were tested they could not rise up to the billing just like against Italy and Wales as well. The Belgium side lacked the spirit to win Championship as they looked ordinary and feeble when attacked by opposition .Momentarily in the game they found it difficult to imposed the game on their opponent Wales as Bale and Ramsey ran string in midfield in vital areas to inflict danger on Belgium. The inability of the Belgians to defend set-piece and are vulnerable in defence irrespective of the quality therein is assure sign that they and not at par with the Germans, France, Italy and the underperforming Portugal (who will surely teach Belgium now to beat Wales) in European Football.


The Belgians lost the game partly because of the sole attention towards Gareth Bale. For the first goal the corner kick came in with the Belgium markers meticulously holding on to Gareth Bale and forgot it is 11 vs. 11 not just the Real Madrid star as the less fancied Swansea City defender Ashley Williams rose highest to plant a header down into the Belgium goal with Courtois and De Bruyne in particular with no answer to the puzzle as the Welsh side equalized to give themselves a life line in the game. It played a key role in the second goal with the Belgian defence closing down Bale immediately expecting Robson-Kanu to lay back for Bale to finish but Kanu cutted in and finish with aplomb. What a goal it was as Belgium were 2-1 down with just 10 minute played after the intermission.

The battle between the Belgium and Wales Coach was won by Wales Coach Chris Coleman who understood in reality that his team cannot faced the Belgians without a superb game plan unlike Marc Wilmots that was fluffing his line around 70 minutes with no clue of what to do tactically from the sidelines. It was a game that was planned and executed in training as Coleman understood how to sting the Belgium by identify there weakness and using it at strength. In the latter stages before the half time it was clear what Wales had in mind as Bale turned in midfield with so much flair and creativity to break up the Belgian defence. Just a moment after that Ramsey received a loose ball in midfield and thread a pinpoint across to Robson-Kanu whose header was on target, such perfection underlines what Wales strategy are and how Wilmots was out muscled in the technical areas with Courtois blaming his coach (Wilmots) to no avail.


With the superior quality of Belgium players on display one expected that Hazard may have the last laugh but it was the Real Madrid man who is in that positive situation and still has an opportunity to go further in the tournament. Hazard had a good game, we all agree but Bale was more influential and incisive in the 90 minute duration. Bale combined sheer quality with tactical discipline as the Wales Coach and their technical department managed to sweep out Belgium from the competition. With Hazard linked with a move to Real Madrid and without certainty of Chelsea holding on to him anything might still be possible regarding a move but if that happens Hazard must perform at a higher level to unfold the shadow casted upon him by the inspirational Gareth Bale.

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