Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has called for Simon Mignolet to show him more respect as they fight it out for Belgium’s No. 1 spot at the 2014 World Cup.
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Courtois, who is currently on loan at Atletico Madrid for a third successive season, believes compatriot Mignolet instigated a “personal attack” on him by questioning coach Marc Wilmots’ selection.
Both have earned 14 caps for their country, while the pair have long been embroiled in a war of words. Mignolet has started Belgium’s last two matches, which both ended in defeat to Columbia and Japan respectively, but Courtois has again hit out at his rival.
“When someone says he’s been unfairly dropped as Belgium’s No. 1 keeper I see it as a personal attack on me,” Courtois is quoted by the The Sun as saying.
“It shows you don’t accept your manager’s calls -- and you have no respect for the first choice. He needs to show respect for whoever is currently in that role.”
Meanwhile, Diego Costa was full of praise for teammate Courtois after the goalkeeper made a string of important saves during Atletico’s 1-0 Champions League last 16 first leg victory over AC Milan on Wednesday.
"Courtois is one of the best goalkeepers in the world and he knows it. With a keeper like him, we feel more secure,” Costa said.