Argentina vs Belgium: World Cup 2014 match preview

A look ahead to the quarter-final match in Brazil’s capital

The competition has tightened which means that there is no room for error and anything but a team’s best performance could prove to be very costly. Two sides that need to understand this concept are Argentina and Belgium who will be looking to put a convincing performance and make it to the semi-finals on their quest to immortality.

Follow Argentina v Belgium live here

Belgium however managed to show plenty of more life than they did in the group stage as they created a number of chances against USA. Although they found Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard in excellent form, Marc Wilmots’s smart coaching brought Romelu Lukaku during extra time which was a move that proved to be decisive in breaking the deadlock. The Chelsea striker is expected to start up front ahead of Divock Origi.

Thanks to a late goal by Real Madrid player Angel Di Maria, Argentina managed to make the quarter-finals but they will have to bring a better game-face if they want to make it through the Belgians. Alejandro Sabella’s squad has lately been relying a lot on Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi, who has proven to be some sort of saviour for the Albicelste, however now the Argentineans will have to put a team effort together if they also want to turn themselves into legitimate contenders for the title. 

KICK-OFF: Saturday, 5pm

PAST TWO MEETINGS…

Argentina 2 (Maradona 2) Belgium 0, World Cup, June 1986

Argentina 0 Belgium 1 (Vandenbergh), World Cup, June 1982

 

STATS…

This is the third time those two sides will face off in a World Cup competition. They have never played in a non-competitive match.

Belgium have won every single match on their way to the quarter finals and their goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has yet to experience international defeat.

Former Chelsea player Kevin de Bruyne created 10 chances against the US which was more than any World Cup player since 1982.

Four out of six Belgian World Cup goals came from substitutes.

Argentina player Angel Di Maria scored in the 118 minute last week against Switzerland, which marked Argentina’s all-time latest goal in the World Cup.

The Albiceleste have managed to win six out of seven World Cup games that have gone to extra time.

ODDS…

Argentina to win: 6.5

Belgium to win: 11.4

Draw: 9.4

CLASSIC MOMENT/MATCH

In 1986 legendary Diego Maradona scored a World Cup classic against Belgium after he passed three players to score his second goal in the semi-final match that sent the Albiceleste to the final where they ultimately won the title.

TV: Live on ITV at 5pm

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