REACTIONS.  Eden Hazard "a little worried" after difficult World Cup win, Michy Batshuayi: "Martinez screamed at us"

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The Red Devils opened their World Cup on Wednesday with a difficult win against Canada (1-0) in group F. Captain Eden Hazard started in the base and was replaced by the Belgians after more than an hour.

Vincent Van Genechten

“I felt good physically,” Hazard said in a first reaction to RTBF. “In the game it went well, but not great. But I’m happy. I know that if I play more matches I will soon be at my best level.”

The Belgians did not have it under the market against Canada. “I am a little worried, but less worried than after our defeat to Egypt. We are a close-knit group. We’ve had great moments with this group and more will follow. I appreciated my teammates’ encouragement when I was replaced.”

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Batshuayi still sees work points: “This is not the best Belgium”

Michy Batshuayi gave the Red Devils a good start at the World Cup (1-0) with a decisive goal against Canada. Despite his goal, the stand-in of the injured top scorer Romelu Lukaku looked back on the game dissatisfied. “It has to be much better”, it sounded clear.

“We knew it wasn’t going to be easy against Canada. We now have to analyze the match and indicate our working points. I hope we can raise our level in the next matches,” said the 29-year-old striker.

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Batshuayi scored his 27th goal in 49 appearances for the national team against the Canadians. “I received the ball very close to the goal and decided to kick straight towards the goal without thinking. I am very happy with my goal,” said the striker. “We could have scored more, because they gave us a lot of space at times. We haven’t done enough with that,” he said.

Batshuayi had not expected Canada to be so dominant. “However, we had not underestimated them. It’s just a very difficult tournament with a lot of strong opponents. The most important thing is that we win. Now we have to work hard on our negative points and keep our feet on the ground. We’re not there yet.”

National coach Roberto Martinez shook his troops awake during half-time, Batshuayi said. “He was not happy. He shouted and told us to keep the ball in the team and set the pace of the game ourselves. This is not yet the best Belgium, but we are going to work to become that as soon as possible.”

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