Thorgan Hazard ruled out
Belgium have experienced very poor luck during the Euro 2020 tournament after not only seeing Timothy Castagne get ruled out of the tournament with a broken eye socket, but also now Thorgan Hazard ruled out of their final group match.
The Borussia Dortmund player took a knock in their match against Denmark and, despite finishing the match, will not be available for the game with Finland.
Belgian reporter Kristof Terreur confirmed that the goalscorer against Denmark did not train and therefore would be unavailable.
Thorgan Hazard suffered a knock on his knee against Denmark. He didn’t train yesterday. https://t.co/lqNitr7PYY
â Kristof Terreur (@HLNinEngeland) June 20, 2021
How Belgium could replace Hazard
This puts Roberto Martinez in a difficult situation because Timothy Castagne was the other option for him to play in a left wing back-style role.
Whilst Hazard is much more attacking than Thomas Meunier on the other side, Castagne could have slotted into the position easily.
Martinez does not have a natural left-wing back replacement for Hazard. The Spanish coach has other players who can play on the left-wing like Thorgan’s brother Eden Hazard or Brighton’s Leandro Trossard however a left wing-back role may be a stretch and too risky.
Martinez could therefore be forced to switch the side to a back 4.
Jan Vertonghen or Thomas Vermaelen could act as unorthodox left-backs and then an additional midfielder brought in.
Both Kevin De Bruyne, who scored, and Axel Witsel came off the bench and either could be the additional man in the middle for Martinez.
Finland are arguably the weakest side in the group and Belgium will be expected to win comfortably and top the group with maximum points.
However, the loss of Castagne permanently and the worry of Thorgan Hazard will plant doubts about the Belgian left flank for the later rounds of the tournament.
This article was edited by Ben Browning.