#Autopsy #pull #received #Belgium #Netherlands
Being ridiculed at home against the Netherlands for the first day of the Nations League (1-4), the Red Devils learned three things: that they no longer ate at the same table as the other major European teams, which was surely everything had to be changed so as not to collapse again in the World Cup, and finally that Roberto Martínez still had no intention of transforming anything.
Martinez, still defenseless
“We analyzed them well and we knew that there was a lot of space between the lines. » Suffice it to say that when Virgil van Dijk blurts out this little phrase in the mixed zone at the end of the match, he has simply put his finger where it hurts. During the 90 minutes, the Belgian defense – not helped by a midfielder who had given up after a quarter of an hour of play – lived through a real nightmare. But before making the observation and agreeing with the colossus of Liverpool, it must also be ensured that such a performance was foreseeable. In great trouble during the Final 4 of the last edition of the League of Nations, the Red Devils’ line of three had only traced the numbers against Italy (2-1), the runs in the bottom of Berardi and the irruptions of Barella at the heart of the game, days after showing laxity against the pull of Benzema and Mbappé (3-2). So inevitably, when we keep the same system, also stuffed with defensive adventures and made up of the same profiles, it couldn’t be decently any other way. Thus, lack of density in midfield and pressing back, Bergwijn only had to release the ball on Mignolet’s goal in the first goal (0-1, 40me). With a push of the ball, Depay erased Alderweireld and Vertonghen for the second goal of the game (0-2, 51me). Boyata’s lunar alignment then allowed Dumfries to make all three passes (0-3, 61me), before Blind won a duel of head to the already resident Al-Duhail to offer the last goal of the Netherlands to Depay in a plateau (0-4, 65me). Curtain. Roberto Martínez saw his 3-4-3 collapse again, his executives collapsed at the slightest adversity, two injured bastions (Lukaku in 27me and Hazard at the break) and above all the pride of an entire team extinguished in just over an hour. The one who had promised change after the failed European Championship did nothing, and was even the subject of a loud whistle at the Roi-Baudouin stadium at the final whistle. A first.
Make new with old, again…
But do not be scared, the Spanish strategist, who was deprived of his Courtois wall (pubalgia), asked everyone not to do it “There is no need to worry six months before the World Cup” . Better, he was even delighted that this defeat was the result of Belgium “I needed to wake up” . And to conclude his speech full of optimism before the press this Friday night, Roberto Martínez assured that the objective of this competition was “to prepare the group for the World Cup” . Here too there is a charlatan: how to see hope in the most total darkness? At the head of an eleven that is still aging, closing the way to many feats such as Wout Faes, Arthur Theate or Charles De Ketelaere to name a few, the coach seems convinced that his managers will show a new face next December. But how can a 33-year-old defender who has taken charge of Qatar’s management for a season, a failed veteran in Portugal or even the eternal Thomas Meunier who hasn’t started since January, send a team to the top of the world? ? On paper it seems impossible. In any case, he no longer scares anyone. And if the only conquest that will make Belgians smile again is finding the Eden Hazard of the big days, better skip the trip to Lusail. No milestones for two seasons in the White House, the Great Knight will not do it all on his own if, as if by magic, he regains color in the coming months. But it seems that betting on a 31-year-old player, at the end of his career and with plates on his knees, is the life that Martínez has decided to lead. Change, and fast!
By Mateo Darbas