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How Belgium could line up against Morocco

How Belgium could line up against Morocco

As Belgium continue their quest for a first World Cup on Sunday, when they meet Morocco at Al Thumama Stadium, the 2018 semi-finalists may make a handful of changes to the side that limped over the line against Canada in midweek.

Although head coach Roberto Martinez expects first-choice centre-forward Romelu Lukaku – the Red Devils’ all-time record goalscorer – to be available during the group stages, there is little chance he will feature this weekend.

Having been troubled by injury since the end of August, Lukaku may not yet be fit enough to take a place among the substitutes, and is more likely to be spared for a potentially crucial final group game against Croatia.

After scoring the only goal against the plucky Canadians, Michy Batshuayi should start again, and a striker that has struggled to find a home at club level averages over a goal every two games for his national side.

Meanwhile, captain Eden Hazard will hope to shrug off both a laboured performance on Wednesday and some strong competition from in-form Leandro Trossard to join the irreplaceable Kevin De Bruyne in behind Batshuayi up front.

Thomas Meunier and Amadou Onana both made some impact from the bench in the Belgians’ opening fixture, so are in contention to supplant Leicester duo Timothy Castagne and Youri Tielemans respectively.

With concerns lingering around a distinct lack of pace among his experienced back three, Martinez may also roll the dice on teenage centre-back Zeno Debast to replace versatile Aston Villa man Leander Dendoncker, though Rennes defender Arthur Theate and Leicester’s Wout Faes could also come into his thinking.

Belgium possible starting lineup: Courtois; Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Dendoncker; Meunier, Onana, Witsel, Carrasco; De Bruyne, E. Hazard; Batshuayi

> Click here to see how Morocco could line up for Sunday’s Group F contest

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