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Monday, July 15, 2024
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Lukaku is cursed

Date: July 15, 2024 Time: 17:43:00

Most of the matches of the 1st round of Euro 2024 have been played. There were many unexpected results, but the main favorites of the tournament always won. Until the Belgians made an exception and lost to Slovakia.

Belgium’s squad is no longer as stellar as in recent international tournaments. And not only because of the non-call of the controversial Thibaut Courtois. It is enough to list the clubs of the starting players: Wolfsburg (Coen Castells), Leicester (Wout Fas), Fulham (Timothy Castagne), Anderlecht (Zeno Debast), Lyon (Aurel Mangala), Everton (Amadou Onana), Al Shabab. (Yannick Ferreira Carrasco) and Roma (Romelu Lukaku). There are also Manchester City (Kevin de Bruyne and Jeremy Doku) and Arsenal (Leandro Trossard), but in Slovakia, for comparison, there are also players from Newcastle (Martin Dubravka), PSG (Martin Skriniar) and Napoli ( Stanislav Lobotka).

However, the difference in class still seemed obvious and already at the beginning of the match he had to play for the Belgians. But… Lukaku. The striker, with his characteristic style, wasted the biggest chance. Doku beat two and rolled to De Bruyne, who redirected the ball towards Romelu. And he took it and shot from a few meters directly into Dubravka’s hands.

Then the Belgian giant made a mistake again: he ran one on one with the goalkeeper, was embarrassed by his long exit and, instead of finishing the episode, clumsily pushed the ball to the left flank, from where Trossard put it directly into the hands . from Dubravka itself.

Romelu Lukaku’s missed opportunity

Photo: Frame from the broadcast of the match.

Class-class, but along with it there must be order. The Belgians themselves, remembering their torment in the 2022 World Cup, will not let you lie. And now Doku swam under pressure, for some reason he started playing near his own area and with a disgusting pass he gave the ball to Robert Bozhenik. A backheel pass to Juraj Kutska, a shot badly rejected by Castells in front of him, a shot by Ivan Shrants, a goal. Would Thibaut Courtois have helped? It is not a fact. And yet there is a feeling that most likely it is.

In the first half, Slovakia defended skillfully and practically did not give in in terms of possession (47%), which forced the opponent to commit frequent fouls (eight infringements against three). However, Belgium created a couple more sweet moments. Dubravka ran out of the goal again and, under pressure, gave the ball to Trossard. He could have passed on the right to Lukaku, who was in a more advantageous position, but he chose to shoot from about 20 meters and missed. I wonder why? He is not a greedy footballer. Apparently, he simply didn’t want to expose his partner to the stress of another embarrassingly missed opportunity.

Do you know what is the most fun? Romelu did it himself, once again closing the exit one by one. Playing on the left in defense, Carrasco made a spectacular shot from his own half of the field. Not marking after this is a terrible sin. But Lukaku is not a saint either.

Romelu Lukaku goes head to head with Martin Dubravka

Photo: Frame from the broadcast of the match.

Castells, by the way, corrected his uncertain play in the scoring episode and effectively cleared Lukas Garaslin’s cannon shot towards the right corner. This is by far the best save of Euro 2024 so far.

In the second half, the Slovaks gave the ball to Belgium, still pressing skillfully and waiting for opportunities to counterattack. And then there was an episode after which no one will be surprised by the premature end of Lukaku’s career in the national team. Trossard served to Onan, who with a nod had to equalize the score. If it weren’t for Romelu: the forward finished empty from a couple of meters. Of course, even he wouldn’t have failed there. Only our hero was clearly offside.

If the striker had not intervened there, the Slovak fans would have felt enveloped in sadness. Instead, they smiled with joy. As expected, the VAR review led to the goal being disallowed.

Romelu Lukaku’s first goal from offside

Photo: Frame from the broadcast of the match.

Doku had another specific moment: his shot was saved by David Gancko instead of Dubravka. And in the 87th minute, Lukaku was once again the author of a disallowed goal, although he was no longer the culprit of its annulment: Lua Openda, who came on as a substitute, assisted Romelu, but first followed the game with his hand. .

Romelu Lukaku’s second goal disallowed for a foul

Photo: Frame from the broadcast of the match.

Despite seven added minutes, the Slovaks did not allow their rival any more. And there are questions for Belgian coach Domenico Tedesco. It is clear that the tall Lukaku is suitable for the top-level football of the winning team. And yet, he frankly failed to get into the game. Why did Romelu remain on the field until the final whistle? His SofaScore score is by far the worst of both teams (6.0).

Why is the left winger of the national team Trossard, who plays for Arsenal as a “false nine”? He would evidently have an easier time in his usual position. There was an alternative: the jet Dodi Lukebakio came into play only in the 84th minute. Castells made a great save, but before that, frankly, it didn’t help. Was the conflict with Courtois really serious enough not to call him? Stanislav Cherchesov, in the case of ignoring Igor Denisov, proved everything to everyone. There is no such thing here yet.

With the current format of the Euro Cup, Belgium still has a good chance of making the playoffs. And yet, he is even closer to failing in his second consecutive major tournament.

Ukraine previously lost in devastating fashion to Romania:

Ukraine’s failure at the start of the Euro Cup. The Real Madrid goalkeeper had a terrible game. Video

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Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.
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