Quarter-final match 3
Argentina vs Belgium
Venue: Estadio Nacional Brasilia
Date & Time: 5th July 2014, GMT 16:00
Referee: Nicola Rizzoli (Italy).
In the Football World Cup History, Argentina has faced Belgium twice with 1 win and 1 loss. Both teams have shown a tremendous performance from the very start of the tournament. Argentina’s last win was the most unforgettable moments for Football World Cup 2014. Meanwhile, Belgium’s win over the USA was a hard-fought victory showing how good the Belgium side is.
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Argentina are without left-back Marcos Rojo after he was yellow-carded, for the second time, in the win over Switzerland in the previous round.
Jose Basanta is his expected replacement.
Sergio Agüero is still out but has returned to training annd could be available if Argentina reach the semi-finals.
Belgium’s Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen could be available and may replace Daniel van Buyten or Jan Vertonghen.
Vincent Kompany is fit but Mousa Dembélé is nursing a thigh problem and remains a doubt.
The big question is whether Romelu Lukaku or Divock Origi will start in attack.
Lukaku made a change when he was introduced in the previous round against the United States.
Both teams have disappointed and, many believe, are due big performances, which makes this a potentially fascinating contest.
With Lionel Messi, Argentina can win the World Cup for the first time since 1986 having reached their fourth quarter-final in five tournaments, but having got no further in the previous three.
Belgium are in their 12th finals but only their second quarter-final, and will believe they can sniff the last four for the first time since 1986.
Stat of the game: In four previous meetings, Argentina have won three and lost one. One of tose Argentina wins was in the semi-final in 1986.
(Expected, 4-3-1-2): Romero; Zabaleta, F Fernández, Garay, Basanta; Gago, Mascherano, Di Maria; Messi; Lavezzi, Higuaín.
(Expected, 4-3-3): Courtois; Alderweireld, Van Buyten, Kompany, Vertonghen; Witzel, De Bruyne, Fellaini; Mertens, Lukaku, E Hazard.