New faces, same tactics for Belgium v England, says Martinez

Reuters , Friday 13 Jul 2018,
Belgium's coach Roberto Martinez holds a press conference at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on July 13, 2018 (Photo: AFP)

Some of the players will be different but there will be no tactical surprises when Belgium face England for a second time at the World Cup in Russia on Saturday to decide third place, Belgium coach Roberto Martinez said.

"It will be the same tactical game, there are no secrets between the two sides,” Martinez predicted, as the teams prepare to meet at the Saint Petersburg Stadium after their previous group stage clash in Kaliningrad, which Belgium won 1-0.

“I think there is a clarity about how England have been successful in this tournament. They are very dynamic, very quick. They use that very well.

“They are also a team that have scored nine goals from dead ball situations, which is going to be a good test for us. We will need concentration.

“And then we’ll have to cope with this system they have developed, a 5-3-2 which is very well synchronised but I don’t think there will be any surprises in this game from the game you saw in the group phase."

Martinez said he expected both teams to make changes from their respective semi-final losses because of fatigue.

“There may be different faces but I think the roles will be very similar,” added Martinez, who was celebrating his 45th birthday on Friday.

“We want to win. When you finish a tournament you carry over the feeling of the last game. We know that.

“We’ve been here a month now since we arrived in Russia, it’s been an incredible experience and everyone who has been a part of the Belgian team has performed in an incredible manner. Every Belgian fan deserves that winning feeling at the end of this tournament. We are going to give everything we have and we know that England are of the same mindset.

“We don’t want to take anything but a positive feeling out of the World Cup. Tomorrow’s game would help a lot towards achieving that,” he said.

(For more sports news and updates and a special World Cup 2018 coverage, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports)


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