Belgium rediscovered their most blistering form to batter group E rivals Republic of Ireland 3-0 in their Euro 2016 match in Bordeaux on Saturday, thanks to a brace from Romelu Lukaku and an Axel Witsel header.
Second-half goals from Romelu Lukaku and Axel Witsel gave Belgium a 2-0 lead over Republic of Ireland in their Euro 2016 match in Bordeaux on Saturday.
Belgium dominated the first half, but the two sides were tied 0-0 at half-time in Bordeaux.
The Red Devils were wasteful in front of goal in the Group E match.
Eden Hazard missed a clear opportunity to score for Belgium in the 21st minute after Kevin De Bruyne swept in a cross from the right. The ball was destined for striker Romelu Lukaku, but it deflected off an Ireland defender and landed at the feet of the unmarked Hazard, who blasted it over the bar.
Yannick Carrasco did put the ball in the back of the net for Belgium in the 24th, but it was ruled offside.
Toby Alderweireld also went close in the 42nd minute but his header was nodded off the line by Ireland midfielder Wes Hoolahan in the 42nd.
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Ireland coach Martin O’Neill made one, enforced alteration to his team following their 1-1 draw with Sweden at the Stade de France on Monday as Stephen Ward replaced the injured Stoke City forward Jon Walters.
That meant Robbie Brady was expected to push forward onto the left wing with Ward lining up at left-back.
Group rivals Italy clinched qualification for the last 16 on Friday by beating Sweden 1-0 in Toulouse.
Republic of Ireland:
Randolph, Coleman, O’Shea, Clark, Ward, Whelan, McCarthy, Hendrick, Hoolahan, Brady, Long
Courtois, Meunier, Alderweireld, Vermaelen, Vertonghen, Witsel, Dembele, De Bruyne, Hazard, Carrasco, Lukaku