All you need to know about the FIFA International team Belgium

In terms of football history, Belgium National Football Team was the first nation on the continent to play association football, which started in 1863. After that, Belgium would go through several decades of highs and lows. They have been in 13 World Cup overall and 5 European Championships, placing third in the 2018 World Cup and second at the 1980 Euro.

Belgium, which is presently ranked in second place, is a serious challenger in the contest. According to historical records, Belgium has a reputation as a World Cup choker. They have been favorites throughout the years, yet they always fail when things get tough. They lost to France in the World Cup quarterfinal. Thibaut Courtois and Kevin De Bruyne, two of the finest players in the world, are on the Belgian team, thus there is a chance that they will win the trophy this time. In this FIFA World Cup, they are placed in Group F with Canada, Morocco, and Croatia.

History of the Belgium National Football Team

Belgium is a nation with a long history of football. Belgian football has steadily improved to reach a global standard. International superstars that were born and raised in Belgium have all developed through the country’s fiercely competitive grassroots football.

The Van Himst era

The squad made some steps ahead in the early 1970s. They won their first match in the 1970 World Cup, defeating El Salvador 3-0, after qualifying for the tournament. However, they lost the next two games, failing to advance to the knockout rounds. They went one step further two years later, reaching the final round of the Euro 1972. Following a tight semi-final loss to West Germany, Belgium overcame Hungary 2-1 in the third-place playoff. Belgium was coached by the renowned Raymond Goethals during that time. Goethals promoted the usage of the offside trap, which eventually became one of the squad’s primary strengths, among his numerous contributions to the national team. The appearance of Paul Van Himst proved to be an even more important component of the jigsaw. Van Himst became Belgium’s joint-top goalscorer throughout his illustrious national team career, scoring 30 goals in 81 games.

A period of underachievement

With the departure of the old guard, the squad failed to qualify for Euro 2004. As it turned out, this was only the first of five successive failures to qualify for a significant event, a record that would endure until the 2014 World Cup. The team’s FIFA ranking fell to 71st in 2007, the lowest it has ever been. Despite several coaching changes, the team’s fortunes did not improve. The results of Belgium’s U-21 selection were the only bright point for Belgian supporters throughout this period. After finishing fourth in the 2008 Olympics, numerous young players from this group began making their senior team debuts. However, these modifications did not result in instant success. The youthful guard only became a team lynchpin in 2012, which was mainly due to Marc Wilmots becoming the club’s manager.

Post-war struggles

For Belgium, the post-war era presented new challenges. From 1950 through 1968, the squad only qualified for one major tournament: the 1954 World Cup. Belgium lost 1-4 against Italy and was unable to advance to the knockout stages after a 4-4 draw with England in the opening match. They were granted the opportunity to play Israel in the 1958 World Cup qualifications as a lucky loser, but they declined because they thought the second chance was beneath them.

Despite its difficulties, Belgium wasn’t exactly a punching bag at the time. During the friendly games, their team’s talent was most obvious. The Golden Team of Hungary was defeated by Belgium in 1957, and they also won against two World Cup champions (West Germany in 1954 and Brazil in 1963). Because of the stark disparity between their friendly games and their competitive ones, Belgium earned the title of “world champion of the friendlies.”

Belgium National Football Team: FIFA World Cup results

Belgium National Football Team has competed in the World Cup 13 times (FIFA World Cup qualification not included).

20183rd place
2010Not Qualified
2006Not Qualified
2002Round of 16
1998Group Stage
1994Round of 16
1990Round of 16
19864th place
1982Group Stage 2
1978Not Qualified
1974Not Qualified
1970Group Stage
1966Not Qualified
1962Not Qualified
1958Not Qualified
1954Group Stage
1938Round 1
1934Round 1
1930Group Stage

Belgium National Football Team Most Famous Players

Vincent Kompany

Vincent Kompany, the captain of the new Belgian football golden age, has made a name for himself as one of the finest central defenders in the world since joining Manchester City. The 28-year-old was recognized as the Belgian Player of the Year and made his national team debut while still in his teens, demonstrating his potential from an early age. Prior to a short tenure in the Bundesliga with Hamburg, he won two league championships with Anderlecht. He has, however, truly flourished at Manchester City, helping them win their first league championship in 44 years and earning the title of Premier League Player of the Season for the 2011–12 season. 

Romelu Lukaku

Romelu Lukaku is a Belgian football player who competes for both Inter Milan of the Serie A and the Belgian national team. Romelu was born and raised in Antwerp, Belgium, and began playing football at a young age. At the age of 5, he joined his first team, Rupel Boom. He was eventually seen by a major club called Lierse and accepted into their youth program. He played 68 games for Lierse, scoring 121 goals, earning him a contract with Anderlecht. He quickly became the top scorer in the Belgian Championship.

After that, in 2011, he joined Chelsea. He was loaned to West Bromwich Albion in 2012. In 2014, he signed a three-year deal with Everton. In 2017, after much speculation, he signed a five-year deal with Manchester United. Romelu has experience playing for both the Belgian senior team and the under-21 squad. Romelu is a particularly active player on the pitch and is well-known for using his body to evade opponents.

Paul van Himst

Nobody has achieved more goals for Belgium than Paul van Himst, who has 30 goals in 81 games. That is just one of several milestones he set over the course of a spectacular 18-year career, 14 of which he spent playing for Manchester United. He spent most of his club career at Anderlecht, where he made 457 appearances, scored 233 goals, and won eight league championships. His 81 international appearances included two major competitions, including the Mexico City World Cup in 1970. In 2003, UEFA and the Belgian FA both declared him the nation’s finest player of the previous 50 years, setting a record for his collection of 4 Belgian Player of the Year titles. He was ranked 39th among all-time players by the IFFHS, surpassing players like Kenny Dalglish, Tom Finney, and Roberto Baggio.

Belgium National Football Team: FIFA World Cup Group

Group F

Belgium FIFA World Cup 2022 Schedule

DateMatchTime (ET)Stadium
Wed, Nov. 23Belgium vs. Canada2 p.m.Ahmad Bin Ali
Sun, Nov. 27Belgium vs. Morocco8 a.m.Al Thumama
Thurs, Dec. 1Croatia vs. Belgium10 a.m.Ahmad Bin Ali 

Belgium National Football Squad for FIFA World Cup

Thibaut CourtoisGK
Simon MignoletGK
Koen CasteelsGK
Toby AlderweireldDEF
Arthur TheateDEF
Wout FaesDEF
Jan VertonghenDEF
Thomas MeunierDEF
Timothy CastagneDEF
Zeno DebastDEF
Kevin de BruyneMID
Hans VanakenMID
Youri TielemansMID
Leander DendonckerMID
Amadou OnanaMID
Yannick CarrascoMID
Axel WitselMID
Charles de KetelaereMID
Leandro TrossardMID
Thorgan HazardMID
Romelu LukakuFWD
Michy BatshuayiFWD
Dries MertensFWD
Eden HazardFWD
Lois OpendaFWD
Jeremy DokuFWD

Summing It Up!

One of the World Cups’ top contenders is Belgium, which is now rated second in the World ranking. According to historical records, Belgium has a reputation as a World Cup choker. They have been favorites throughout the years, yet they always fail when things get tough. In the last World Cup quarterfinal against France , they were defeated. Given that the Belgian side features two of the best players in the world in Thibaut Courtois and Kevin De Bruyne, they have a chance to take home the title this time. They are grouped along with Canada, Morocco, and Croatia in Group F of the current FIFA World Cup 2022.

Read More: All you need to know about the FIFA International team Brazil

Martin is a sports enthusiast and loves to write about trending events globally. He has also been selected for one of the FIFA World Cup Volunteering in 2014. Moreover, he loves to watch TV Shows and is a die hard Kobe Bryant Fan!