Ruthless Belgium trounce sorry scots
Kevin de Bruyne impressed Belgium to a brutal defeat of hapless Scotland to all however finish hopes of reaching Euro 2020 through their qualification group.
The Manchester Metropolis man arrange Romelu Lukaku, Thomas Vermaelen and Toby Alderweireld and netted the fourth.
Steve Clarke’s facet should now look to subsequent yr’s play-offs as their greatest hope of ending a 22-year watch for an look at a serious finals.
Victory made it six wins from six for Roberto Martinez’s Group I leaders.
In reality, it might have been far worse for Scotland in opposition to the world’s primary ranked facet at Hampden, who performed effectively inside themselves.
Scotland, in fifth, now path Russia by 9 factors and Belgium by 12 with 4 video games to go.
Supernatural De Bruyne brilliance & determined weak point
After the chastening 2-1 loss at dwelling to Russia on Friday got here this evisceration by Belgium – an Eden Hazard-less Belgium at that. Who wants the Actual Madrid man when you have already got the supernatural brilliance of De Bruyne on high of determined weak point from the house group, whose defence was paper-bag skinny, with all due apologies to paper baggage?
Scotland, with Kenny McLean, Ryan Christie, Robert Snodgrass and Matt Phillips coming in for John McGinn, Ryan Fraser, James Forrest and Oli McBurnie, had a couple of early minutes of optimism after which a harrowing evening thereafter, the horror present starting after they conceded the primary aim after simply 9 minutes. The Scots obtained finished on the counter assault. In leaving themselves so open they had been had been unbelievably naive and completely reckless. Incompetence on a world scale.
From the sting of their very own field, Belgium went just like the clappers after regaining possession from a Snodgrass free-kick, Dries Mertens peeling away and discovering De Bruyne who was working unencumber the left. He had time and area and much, far an excessive amount of excellence for the scrambling Scottish defence. He merely regarded up, picked out Lukaku who had strolled in on aim all on his lonesome and the Internazionale striker did the remainder.
The entire thing – from Mertens to De Bruyne to Lukaku to the again of Dave Marshall’s web – took 14 seconds. It was Lukaku’s 49th aim for his nation. He might have had his 50th 9 minutes later when De Bruyne – who else? – dinked a beautiful ball into him. Lukaku didn’t clip it previous Marshall.
A second Belgium aim was not lengthy in coming. As soon as once more it was De Bruyne who created it, this time with a cross from the fitting which was poked dwelling by Vermaelen. Scotland, a disorganised mess on the again, failed to choose him up. What gargantuan issues Clarke has in making an attempt to create one thing resembling a defence worthy of the identify.
Phillips examined Thibaut Courtois however a shell-shocked Hampden sunk ever deeper into despair when Belgium struck once more simply after the half-hour mark. It was one other avoidable aim, a free header from a De Bruyne nook. Alderweireld obtained away from Charlie Mulgrew and thumped his effort in off the underside of Marshall’s crossbar.
Three objectives and three De Bruyne assists. Belgium had scored 10 objectives in two-and-a-half video games in opposition to the Scots in a yr. The factor about this newest hiding was they pulled it off with out ever having to maneuver out of second or third gear. They didn’t must get anyplace close to their greatest.
Marshall needed to tip away a shot by Mertens and De Bruyne missed a fantastic likelihood. Sandwiched in between was a forlorn dive from Stephen O’Donnell which introduced the Scotland right-back a yellow card as an alternative of the penalty he was on the lookout for. Scott McTominay additionally went into the e-book and he’ll miss the journey to Russia subsequent month, not that it issues. Scotland’s goose is effectively and actually cooked now.
There was a fourth for the Belgians, Lukaku being allowed to show by some extra comatose Scottish defending earlier than discovering the unplayable De Bruyne, who slotted a right-footed roller past Marshall to pile on the ache for what was left of the house crowd. Lots of them had headed for dwelling by then. One has to surprise what number of of them shall be again.
Man of the match – Kevin de Bruyne
A masterclass from the playmaker together with his passing, tempo, consciousness and by no means ending potential to seek out area beguiling and bemusing Scotland in equal measure. A luxurious end late on offered the aim his efficiency genuinely-earned.
- Belgium have scored 16 objectives with out reply of their previous six conferences with Scotland.
- Scotland have received simply one in all their previous 14 video games in opposition to Belgium (W1 D2 L11), a 2-Zero Euro qualifier victory in October 1987.
- Steve Clarke has misplaced three of his first 4 matches in control of Scotland.
- Belgium striker Romelu Lukaku has scored 5 objectives in his three worldwide appearances in opposition to Scotland.
- Below Roberto Martinez, Belgium have received all 5 of their matches in opposition to British sides by an combination rating of 13-0.
- Scotland have saved two clear sheets of their previous 10 video games.