Jun 29, 2016

    We will meet Wales at 'home', says de Bruyne


    KEVIN De Bruyne wants Belgium's Euro 2016 quarter-final clash with Wales to be like a home game - the Lille stadium is just 100km from the Belgian border.

    A huge wave of Belgians is expected to cross the frontier to invade the French city to watch their country take on opponents that he called "a technically and defensively astute side".

    Belgium are on a high after their 4-0 rout of Hungary on Sunday that saw Chelsea forward Eden Hazard produce an inspirational display as captain. De Bruyne is counting on the Red Devils to produce more of the same.

    "I can't wait for this match which will be like a home match for us because it's right on the Belgian border.

    "We're expecting a lot of fans. We hope we can go all the way in this tournament."

    The one-sided performance against Hungary in Toulouse has encouraged Belgian hopes that they can emulate their 1980 feat of reaching the final, when they lost to West Germany.

    As plaudits poured down on Belgium, coach Marc Wilmots was quick to send a word of caution.

    "We're into the quarter-finals, but we've done nothing yet," said Wilmots who will be without defender Thomas Vermaelen after he picked up a yellow card to trigger a one-match suspension.

    But Belgium head to Lille as favourites - and Wales manager Chris Coleman is happy about that after his side laboured to a 1-0 win over Northern Ireland when they were favourites.

    "We were edgy going into the Northern Ireland game as we were expected to win and we work better as the underdog," he noted.

    "We have proved that - and people will expect Belgium to win. They had some criticism coming into the tournament and they lost the first game (against Italy).

    "But if you have a squad with that quality, then any team you play against, apart from maybe two or three, Belgium are favourites."




    Poland v Portugal


    Wales v Belgium


    Germany v Italy


    France v Iceland

    * All ties at 3am