Previous
CSKA Moscow
Bayern Munich
0
1
FT
Game Details
Manchester City
AS Roma
1
1
FT
Game Details
Apoel Nicosia
Ajax Amsterdam
1
1
FT
Game Details
Paris Saint-Germain
Barcelona
3
2
FT
Game Details
Schalke 04
NK Maribor
1
1
FT
Game Details
Sporting Lisbon
Chelsea
0
1
FT
Game Details
BATE Borisov
Athletic Bilbao
2
1
FT
Game Details
Shakhtar Donetsk
FC Porto
2
2
FT
Game Details
Brighton & Hove Albion
Cardiff City
1
1
FT
Game Details
Derby County
AFC Bournemouth
2
0
FT
Game Details
Middlesbrough
Blackpool
1
1
FT
Game Details
Millwall
Birmingham City
1
3
FT
Game Details
Norwich City
Charlton Athletic
0
1
FT
Game Details
Rotherham United
Blackburn Rovers
2
0
FT
Game Details
Sheffield Wednesday
Ipswich Town
1
1
FT
Game Details
Watford
Brentford
2
1
FT
Game Details
Wigan Athletic
Nottingham Forest
0
0
FT
Game Details
Crewe Alexandra
Notts County
0
3
FT
Game Details
AFC Telford United
Chester City
1
2
FT
Game Details
Alfreton Town
Halifax
0
2
FT
Game Details
Altrincham
Macclesfield Town
1
0
FT
Game Details
Braintree Town
Barnet
1
1
FT
Game Details
Dover
Aldershot Town
3
0
FT
Game Details
Eastleigh
Bristol Rovers
1
1
FT
Game Details
Forest Green Rovers
Torquay United
2
1
FT
Game Details
Grimsby Town
Southport
0
1
FT
Game Details
Lincoln City
Gateshead
1
1
FT
Game Details
Welling
Dartford
2
2
FT
Game Details
Woking
Nuneaton Town
1
0
FT
Game Details
Wrexham
Kidderminster Harriers
1
0
FT
Game Details
Aberdeen
St Mirren
2
2
FT
Game Details
León
Monterrey
1:06 AM GMT
Game Details
Atlas
Queretaro
1:30 AM GMT
Game Details
U.A.N.L
Santos
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
São Paulo
Huachipato
0
0
LIVE 16'
Leg 1
Game Details
Icasa
Luverdense
0
0
LIVE 45'
Game Details
Sampaio Correa-MA
Portuguesa de Desportos
0
0
LIVE 45'
Game Details
Vila Nova-GO
Ceará
1
3
LIVE 59'
Game Details
AA Ponte Preta
Paraná Clube
0
0
LIVE 0'
Game Details
Al-Ain
Al Hilal
2
1
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 4
Game Details
Herediano
Universidad De Costa Rica
Postp
Postponed - now being played Wed, Oct 1
Game Details
Next

Early Argentina, Dutch survive

Five Aside Jul 5, 2014
Read
 Posted by Wim van Walle
Jul 6, 2014

Assessment: Belgium making progress

ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop reveals his reasons for Belgium's goalless exit against Argentina.

Belgium had been picked by many as a team with an outside chance of lifting the World Cup trophy, but it was not to be, and Argentina eliminated them in a tight quarterfinal. Here is ESPNFC blogger Wim Van Walle's verdict on the brighter points of the campaign, as well as what went wrong.

One sentence: World Cup recap

Belgium's young team of course have reason to be disappointed but have done enough in Brazil to hold their heads up with pride.

Star Man

Although Kevin De Bruyne, Dries Mertens, Divock Origi and many others impressed, for sheer consistency it is hard to look past Daniel Van Buyten. Given that he is 36, it is likely this World Cup will be his last big tournament. The fact that he managed to hold on to his place amid the host of young talent Belgium has available is testament to his enduring class. He had in recent years become second choice but kept himself available, happy to deputise for his country, and did so with some efficiency in qualification. He played every minute of every game and did not make any errors defensively, while his buildup play was exemplary. Knowing his limitations, Van Buyten never tried a fancy pass but securely got the ball to his more skillful teammates.

Vincent Kompany is the more high-profile of Belgium's central defensive partnership, but Daniel Van Buyten was a colossus in Brazil.

A presence off the pitch as well, Belgium's most decorated player (14 league and cup wins with Bayern) is a respected figure, and his young teammates made full use of his experience. After Romelu Lukaku's miserable experiences in the group stage, Van Buyten spent a lot of time with the striker, as he knew exactly how Lukaku felt, having previously been targeted as a scapegoat during times of Belgian struggle. When Lukaku scored against the USA, Van Buyten said he "was in agony with pain, but I wanted to be with him before anyone else, so I sprinted like mad." It sums up Van Buyten both as a man and a player. The eternal team man, Belgium will miss his presence and perseverance.

Highlights

Belgium didn't thrill too often, but the whole game against USA has to go down as one of the highlights, not just for the Red Devils but the World Cup as a whole. The way Belgium pinned their opponents back was impressive, and they finally showed the world what all the hype was about.

All team assessments

Group Stage: Australia | Bosnia-Herzegovina | Cameroon | Croatia | Ecuador | England | Ghana | Honduras | Italy | Iran
Ivory Coast Japan | Portugal | Russia | South Korea | Spain
Round of 16: Algeria | Chile | Greece | Mexico
Nigeria | Switzerland | Uruguay | United States
Quarterfinals: Colombia | France | Belgium | Costa Rica
Semifinals: Brazil | Netherlands
Finalists: Argentina
Winners: Germany

In terms of individual moments, if Eden Hazard failed to make the expected overall impact, he did weave his magic for Belgium's goal against Russia by breaching the back line with a fantastic move and playing the ball back for Origi to finish with aplomb.

Romelu Lukaku's goal against the USA will be hard to forget too, both for the brutal force of it and the way it was celebrated. Lukaku ran to the camera and screamed: "Je t'aime, Papa!" (I love you, Dad!) to his father, who had been unable to make the trip to Brazil due to illness. After that, he celebrated with his on-pitch father, Van Buyten.

Low Points

The whole game against Argentina feels like one big low point. A deflection off the calf of Jan Vertonghen took the ball to Gonzalo Higuain to make it 1-0. After that, Argentina refused to allow a game to develop; Belgium couldn't find an answer to this negative approach, and so a semifinal clash of the Low Countries fell by the wayside. Argentina were not the better team in the encounter, and Belgium justifiably felt hard done by; it somehow feels worse than being played off the pitch by a superior opponent.

Lessons Learned

The lack of impact from set pieces is surely something that must be addressed; Belgium had 40 corners but failed to make a single one count, with most being hit either too long or too short. Coach Marc Wilmots said he didn't see the point of practicing corners, as he expects his players to know how to handle them, but this is not club football, and it could have made the difference if the Red Devils had corner routines to turn to.

Romelu Lukaku's emotional celebration against the USA came after a devastating cameo.

However, Belgium can take many positives out of this World Cup. But for the presence of Van Buyten, Belgium would have been the youngest team in the competition. Their target was to reach the round of 16, and having gone one better, Belgium is both proud and hopeful of greater success at Euro 2016 and the 2018 World Cup -- when these players will all have a few extra years of maturity and experience.

Wim van Walle

Wim Van Walle has contributed to ESPNFC since 2010. Back in 1980, his passion for football was decided by the teams of the day. And apparently it stuck. Three decades later, Van Walle is still as passionate about Belgium's Red Devils and Nottingham Forest.