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Belgium v Scotland Match Report, 11/06/2019, EC Qualification

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Belgium 3 Scotland 0: Lukaku double as hosts make it four in a row

Belgium earned a win over Scotland that was much more comfortable than the scoreline suggested thanks to Romelu Lukaku and Kevin De Bruyne.

Romelu Lukaku continued his fine international form with a double as Belgium eased to a 3-0 win over Scotland in Euro 2020 qualifying.

Belgium have now won four out of four matches in Group I after a victory in Brussels on Tuesday that rarely looked in doubt.

Manchester United forward Lukaku scored once in each half to make it 25 international goals in his last 21 appearances and in truth he should quite conceivably have finished with four or five to his name.

Kevin De Bruyne sealed the win with a 20-yard strike in stoppage time as Steve Clarke suffered his first defeat as Scotland manager and his side now sit three points behind second-placed Russia.

Belgium dominated a first half that saw the visitors squander their only chance through Oliver Burke and lose Stuart Armstrong to injury, with away goalkeeper David Marshall saving well from De Bruyne early on.

Another effort from De Bruyne was wonderfully tipped away from the top corner by Marshall, before the Manchester City star laid on a great close-range chance for Lukaku that the striker somehow managed to block with his own foot.

But Lukaku made up for that one minute into first-half stoppage time, rising above Scott McKenna to thump in a header from six yards after Eden Hazard had linked up with his brother Thorgan and floated in a clever cross.

Lukaku could not convert a superb headed chance early in the second half, while De Bruyne’s free-kick was saved by Marshall.

But the powerhouse striker got his second after 57 minutes, tapping in a rebound after Marshall tipped away an effort from De Bruyne, who Scotland claimed was offside in the build-up.

Lukaku twice fired just wide as he sought a hat-trick, while Thibaut Courtois confirmed his clean sheet with a key late save from McKenna before De Bruyne netted after a neat exchange with substitute Dries Mertens to give the scoreline a more realistic look.

What does it mean? Belgium in control

Belgium have won four straight matches in qualifying and are producing fluent, attacking performances with the likes of De Bruyne and Hazard instrumental. Displays like this make it look very unlikely they will be prevented from claiming a smooth passage to the Euros.

Hazard magnificent ahead of Real Madrid arrival

Real Madrid fans would have loved what they saw from in-form Hazard, who created seven chances and was a constant threat to end his season on a high.

Scotland need more from McTominay

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Scotland do not have many players playing for major clubs, so they need more from those who do like United’s Scott McTominay, who conceded four fouls, did not create a single chance for his team-mates and saw little of the ball.

What’s next?

Belgium have an easier assignment on September 6 when they travel to San Marino, which is when Scotland host Russia in a vital contest for the race to finish second.





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