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Belgium Player Ratings
 By Ian Holyman

Roberto Martinez signs Belgium contract extension until Euro 2020

Ian Darke likens Belgium to a band who can never get a number one. The ESPN panel question if Roberto Martinez can get it right for Belgium's golden generation.

Roberto Martinez has signed a two-year contract extension with Belgium, meaning he will stay as national coach until Euro 2020.

An appraisal of the former Swansea and Everton manager's time in charge of the Red Devils had been expected to be made after the World Cup.

Martinez, who took over from Marc Wilmots following Belgium's Euro 2016 exit to Wales, steered his team through qualifying unbeaten, winning nine of 10 matches.

That convinced the Belgian FA to offer him a longer deal before the squad heads to Russia.

"Since his appointment in August 2016, the Royal Belgian Football Association (RBFA) has been delighted with this positive, professional and sincere collaboration with Roberto Martinez," a statement said.

"Belgium's impeccable performance during World Cup qualification gives the RBFA plenty of confidence on a sporting level to continue the momentum with the national coach.

"For the RBFA, the decision to continue working with a coach with international experience is a well-considered choice.

"Thanks to his Premier League past, Martinez is close to the world of the current generation of Red Devils, with whom he maintains close ties."

The statement said the coach's assistants, Graeme Jones and Richard Evans, had also signed new deals.

However, it did not mention former Arsenal striker Thierry Henry, who has been working as part of Martinez's staff but is reportedly tempted to take a more senior coaching role at a club.

Belgium open their World Cup challenge against Panama in Sochi on June 18 and also face Tunisia and England in Group G.

Ian is ESPN's French football correspondent. Twitter: @ian_holyman


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