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Martinez’s message to Belgium’s Euro rivals amid Romelu Lukaku and co’s goals

Roberto Martinez reckons Belgium have hit an “incredible level” ahead of this summer’s rescheduled Euros.

The Red Devils top the Fifa world rankings and a 3-1 win over Wales made it 156 goals in 52 games under boss Martinez.

The former Everton, Wigan and Swansea coach has high hopes for this year.

He was hugely encouraged as his side came from behind to win their opening World Cup qualifier in Leuven.

Martinez, who has won 41 of his games in charge, said: “I am looking at these 52 games where we scored 156 goals.

“Three goals per game at international level, that is an incredible level.

“This group has grown immensely.

“We had to show the best side in terms of personality and competitive nature against Wales.

Belgium boss Roberto Martinez says Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne is becoming a leader for them

“If you look at the stats in modern football, the away team have a real chance with the lack of fans.

“The way Wales started the game scoring the goal, it would have been all too easy to accept that.

“We were competitive and didn’t accept defeat.

“I am delighted.”

Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne equalised with a brilliant shot from outside the box before the hosts triumphed with goals from Thorgan Hazard and Romelu Lukaku.

Martinez added: “It was an exhibition of Kevin De Bruyne taking a leadership role.”

Youri Tielemans is enjoying a fine season for club and country with Leicester and Belgium

Leicester ace Youri Tielemans also excelled in midfield while there were starts for Spurs defender Toby Alderweireld and Wolves midfielder Leander Dendoncker.

Foxes’ wing-back Timothy Castagne also came off the bench along with Leandro Trossard of Brighton.

Martinez added: “I am pleased with the maturity of the team.

“You have to play from the back and take chances and take risks.

“That is where the personality of the group was very clear.”

Tielemans,23, is enjoying a stellar season for club and country after helping Brendan Rodgers’ side to third in the Premier League and into the FA Cup semi-finals.

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Martinez added: “If you look at Youri Tielemans he has been around this group for a long time, almost since 2016.

“What Youri has now is he has an understanding and role in the team which goes beyond his age.

“That is what pleases you that players adapt.

“Youri is a playmaker who can play any sort of angles short and long and brings the whole team in a good way.

“He has that personality that is needed even when the conditions are not favourable.”




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