Belgium BEL
3
Lukaku 9', 87',Meunier 33'
Completed

Belgium 3-0 Russia: result, summary and goals

Rob Train

COMMENT

Belgium 3-0 Russia: as it happened

Belgium sit atop Group B after today's action and will be firm favourites to go through as group winners after tonight's result.

group B Pts MP W D L
1 3 1 1 0 0
2 3 1 1 0 0
3 0 1 0 0 1
4 0 1 0 0 1
90+2

And that's the whistle! Belgium get their Euro 2020 campaign off to a flying start with a 3-0 victory that slightly flatters the Red Devils' performance over the 90 minutes, but we fancy that won't bother Martínez one little bit.

90

Two minutes added.

90

Miranchuk! A decent free kick from the Atalanta midfielder but it whistles over Courtois' bar.

89

That has certainly embellished Belgium's work this evening. Russia have been the better side in the second half but look set to swallow a 3-0 defeat.

That came out of nowhere really. Belgium had looked happy to run down the clock and save some enery but Meunier, who has been excellent this evening, turned on some pace and played a lovely through ball to Lukaku, who slots past Shunin for his second of the game!

87

Gooooooooooooooool! Lukaku!

85

Russia are furious as a throw goes Belgium's way despite Thorgan Hazard getting the final touch.

83

Meunier clears but Russia play it in again and Boyata skews a clearance behind for a corner.

82

A chance for Russia here as Vermaelen floors Miranchuk on the left. The big lads are up for this one.

79

Free kick for Russia as Tielemans carves through the back of Miranchuk.

76

Vermaelen is on finally, and Carrasco makes way for Dennis Praet.

74

Great run from Miranchuk, who is almost through before Boyata sticks out a boot to halt his progress.

72

Vertonghen remaions on the pitch until the next pause in play. Thomas Vermaelen waiting to take his place.

70

Vertonghen knocks the ball out of play and signals to the bench. Martínez had a planned change, Mertens for Hazard, but the defender is off as well and Belgium are down to 10 briefly.

68

Belgium are failing to make inroads into the Russia back line in the second period and Lukaku has suddenly become very isolated at the top of their attack.

66

Belgium are not happy as Vertonghen is sent into the middle of next week by an over-zealous Dzyuba challenge.

64

Zobnin and Cheryshev off, Maksim Mukhin and Aleksei Miranchuk on.

62

Shunin punches clear though.

61

Now Belgium are on the attack and Mertens wins a corner off Ozdoyev.

59

Tielemans gets it clear but Russia look to build again.

57

Good period for Russia here as they press Belgium back after taking advantage of the visitors' high line. Golovin almost plays Fernandes in and the hosts have a corner.

54

Excellent chance for Russia as Cheryshev latches onto a loose ball after a mistake by Dendoncker but the ref pulls it back for a foul. Russia looking more dangerous going forward at the start of the second half.

51

Some nice footwork from Karavayev on the left but after skipping free of the Belgian defence there is nobody in the area to attack the cross.

49

Courtois is forced to come out and punch clear as a decent cross comes in but the flag was up anyway,

46

Another change for Russia at the break, Dmitri Barinov off, Igor Diveyev on.

Here's how Group B looks as it stands.

group B Pts MP W D L
1 3 1 1 0 0
2 3 1 1 0 0
3 0 1 0 0 1
4 0 1 0 0 1

Seven shots for Belgium in the first half, three on target, two goals. Russia have managed just two, with only one forcing Courtois to intervene.

45+4

And that's the half! Belgium two goals to the good and Russia with some work to do after the break.

45+2

Carrasco! The Atlético winger goes on an impossible run, almost tripping but stumbling through three defenders before firing just high! Great ball control.

45

Four minutes added.

43

Change for Russia as Zhirkov heads off, Vyacheslav Karavayev on.

41

Belgium are looking pretty comfortable now but Russia manage to push the red shirts all the way back to Courtois.

38

Close! It's floated in and drops invitingly in the area but just behind Golovin, who can't check and get a boot on it.

37

Now Russia have a very promising looking free kick on the edge of the area.

36

But the Zenit player is back on the turf at his home stadium.

35

Yuri Zhirkov is off an getting treatment after seeming to twang something chasing down Lukaku.

Shunin parries a hopeful cross straight into the path of the substitute, who is completely unmarked and makes no mistake from close range!

33

Goooooooooooooooool! Meunier!

27

Thomas Meunier is on for Belgium. It looks as though Kuzyayev, with a heavily bandaged head, will play on for now.

25

Martínez sends his bench out to warm up and Russia follow suit. Castagne certainly looks like he won't be able to continue.

24

Kuzyayev and Castagne are both down after a horrible clash in midfield. The medical teams are on in a hurry to treat both players.

22

Russia come forward again and the hosts are some having joy down the Belgian right but the Red Devils' defence holds firm.

18

What a tackle from Dzhikiya! Lukaku drives forward and is almost clean through but the Spartak defender throws himself into a challenge to save his side!

16

Ozdoyev! He had to fire through a sea of legs there and drags his shot wide but Russia have responded well to going behind and have Belgium on the back foot.

14

Fernandes! But the hosts almost hit back through the CSKA defender, whose acrobatic effort drops into the grateful gloves of Courtois. 

13

That will not have been in Cherchesov's plans. Russia's chances here lie largely in keeping Belgium's potent front line at bay and hitting on the break. There aren't too may recognized goalscorers in the side beyond captain Artem Dzyuba.

The Inter striker reads that extremely well as the ball takes a nick off a defender. He was offside initially but checked his run, turned and hammered the ball past Shunin!

10

Goooooooooooool! Lukaku!

8

Golovin delivers but the Monaco midfielder overcooks it and it's over the defence and out harmlessly on the other side.

7

A Russian break yields a corner...

6

It's all Belgium in the opening exchanges as Carrasco drifts in from the left and looks to play a ball into the box. It rolls straight through to Shunin in the Russian sticks though.

4

Tielemans sends Castagne chasing a long ball down the right but the Leicester man can't get to it.

2

Belgium trying to get settled on the ball, a vociferous crowd trying to make sure they don't. Russia are sitting very deep against the threat of the Red Devils' swift attacking potential.

1

We're off! Russia get the ball rolling!

Mateu Lahoz the man in the middle this evening, flying the Liga flag.

Here we go with the anthems. Volume going up for Russia, it's quite a spine-tingler.

Confirmation of Belgium's rather impressive bench this evening...

Belgium will also have to contend with an estimated 30,000 Russia fans in Saint Petersburg this evening.

"I'm sure that the last three years, when the team reaches the level of continuity and consistency that it's showed in the world rankings there is more expectation," Martinez sais in his pre-match news conference. "There are more neutral fans who follow the team.

"But that doesn't change anything for us. You grow from expectation within the team. The difficulty is the team we have in front of us. I don't think this team will suffer because of expectation."

EURO 2020

Denmark-Finland to resume after Eriksen scare

UEFA confirmed a short while ago that as well as the Belgium - Russia game going ahead as planned, Denmark vs Finland will kick off again at 20:30 after the game was halted when Christian Eriksen collapsed on the pitch. In good news, the Inter midfielder is conscious again and stable in hospital.

Russia XI confirmed

Russia's starting line-up: Shunin; Fernandes, Semenov, Dzhikiya, Zhirkov; Ozdoev, Barinov; Zobnin, Golovin, Kuzyayev, Dzyuba.

Belgium starting XI confirmed

Roberto Martínez has announced his starting line-up and the big news is there is no place for Eden Hazard. Instead his brother, Thorgan, gets the nod.

GRUPO B | BÉLGICA

Hazard: "I want to show that I'm made to play for Real Madrid"

The Belgium forward gave an interview to ‘Het Nieuwsblad’ ahead of tonight's game in which he looked back over his first two seasons at Real Madrid.

Belgium will be missing Kevin de Bruyne and Alex Witsel in Saint Petersburg while Russia have no injury concerns going into tonight's game. In the absence of De Bruyne, Eden Hazard will be expected to lift Belgium but the Real Madrid player hasn't had the best of seasons and it remains to be seen if he can rediscover his form for his country in their hour of need. 

Russia were semi-finalists at Euro 2008 but have not been further than the group stage at the finals since then. Cherchesov will certainly be familiar with tonight's opponents: Belgium and Russia were in the same qualifying group. The Red Devils finished top with 10 wins from 10, 40 goals scored and just three conceded.

Russia were second, with eight wins and two defeats, both inflicted by Belgium, 3-1 at home and 4-1 away.

Planning to upset Belgium's apple cart is Stanislav Cherchesov, who took over the reins of the Russia national team at the same time Martínez joined Belgium and led them to the quarter-finals of the 2018 World Cup on home soil.

For many of this heralded generation of players time is running out for international glory. Several of Martínez's key players are over 30 but there is the prospect of a World Cup around the corner. However, the Red Devils will be eyeing their group quite happily and will be expected to make it out with little fuss.

All eyes will be on Belgium going into tonight's game with the Red Devils the second favourites to lift the trophy behind France with most bookies. Roberto Martínez's golden generation have been close to achiving glory, reaching the quarters at Euro 2016 and the semis at the 2018 World Cup.

Belgium vs Russia live: Euro 2020

Hello and welcome to AS English's live coverage of the Euro 2020 Group B game between Belgium and Russia from the Krestovsky Stadium in Saint Petersburg. Kick-off is at 21:00 CEST.

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