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Putin criticises Russia national team

Russia
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Wilmots extends Belgium contract

Belgium head coach Marc Wilmots has extended his contract until 2018, he confirmed on Wednesday.

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Wilmots, 45, took over as national coach in 2012 and ensured the Red Devils' first participation in a World Cup finals since 2002, guiding them to qualification with a record of eight wins and two draws.

The extension of his Belgium deal had been agreed in April, but the former Schalke player had wanted to ensure that the rest of his coaching staff would also be staying before putting pen to paper.

This has almost been confirmed, with only the future of goalkeeping coach Erwin Lemmers still uncertain, German football magazine kicker reported.

Speaking to reporters after a team training session, Wilmots said: "I've signed. Vital [Borkelmans, his assistant coach] and Mario [Innaurato, physical trainer] also extended their contracts a few days ago, as well as the doctor [Kris Van Crombrugge]."

Wilmots, whose deal had previously been due to expire in 2014, will now attempt to continue the progress made by his highly-rated team at the 2018 World Cup finals in Russia.

In Brazil, the Belgians will take on Algeria, South Korea and Russia in Group H.

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