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Belgium ends England's Nations League title dream

England's Nations League title dream ends after Belgium defeat

November 15, 2020 By Emmanuel K. Budu-Annor
The Three Lions' objective to reach the

England's Nations League hopes came to a crashing end on Sunday after failing to secure the first of two wins to make a claim for a place among the "final four". The Three Lions were subjected to a 2-0 defeat by Belgium who are now a win away from featuring in the penultimate clash of the tournament.

With the likes of Raheem Sterling and Marcus Rashford all unavailable through injury, Gareth Southgate's absentee-hit side sought to take their chances with the rest of the squad. However, fate was not on their side this time and the game's opening goal even proves to show this. 

In the 10th minute, Belgium took charge of the game through Youri Tielemans who had a shot beating Jordan Pickford after deflecting off Tyrone Mings. England almost delivered a quick response to restore parity but Harry Kane had his goal-bound header from a cross being cleared off the line by Romelu Lukaku.

Moments later, the hosts doubled their advantage with Dries Mertens scoring a superb free-kick that was awarded them as a result of Declan Rice's challenge on Kevin De Bruyne. In effect, the Three Lions entered the half time break with a two-goal deficit in any international for the first time since they managed that against the Netherlands in August 2009. 

While many anticipated a comeback reminiscent of what was inspired by Jermain Defoe in that particular encounter over 11 years ago, Southgate's men failed to put their hosts in any uncomfortable situation. With the match results favoring the Red Devils, they consolidated their status as Group A2 leaders with 12 points from five outings. They are closely followed by Denmark who took their point tally to 10 in five outings after defeating Iceland in the other group fixture.

With seven points from five matches, England are on course to retaining their presence in League A with a third place finish.

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