National coach Roberto Martinez looks ahead to decisive diptych in Nations League: “Eden Hazard exudes energy and happiness again”

National coach Roberto Martinez looks ahead to decisive diptych in Nations League: “Eden Hazard exudes energy and happiness again”
National coach Roberto Martinez looks ahead to decisive diptych in Nations League: “Eden Hazard exudes energy and happiness again”

The day before the Nations League game against Wales, Roberto Martinez spoke to the press again. What does the national coach expect from the next two games? And will he leave Eden Hazard on the pitch for 90 minutes? “I would be surprised if there were players who play 90 minutes twice,” Martinez said at the press conference.

Ludo Vandewalle, Pieter-Jan Calcoen

Today at 17:56

On Thursday evening, the Red Devils will once again take on Wales. An opponent that should not be underestimated, according to Martinez. “They have a clear system that makes them competitive. They don’t rely on individuals and being there at the World Cup says a lot. I expect a difficult game, you cannot be at ease for a second. We have learned our lessons from the previous confrontations.”

Pretty soon we ask the national coach what he plans to do with Eden Hazard and how the captain of the Devils is doing in training. “Eden Hazard… I always get the same questions. Has he played enough?, those kind of things. He misses minutes, that’s clear, but his mindset is good. He is looking forward to playing. Hazard radiates energy and happiness, I didn’t see that with him about six or seven months ago. Can he play a full match? That will depend on the course of the race and the pace. But sixty minutes would be good. There are only three days between Wales and the Netherlands. I would be surprised if there are players who play 90 minutes twice.”

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About Zeno Debast: “Personality is impressive for his age”

Will Zeno Debast, the only newcomer in the selection, also get minutes? “If I call someone now, it’s because I think he can contribute something towards the World Cup. Zeno Debast impresses me. His personality is impressive for someone his age. I have no doubt that he can play a big role with the Red Devils in the future.”

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Dedryck Boyata will certainly not be there against Wales. “As a precaution”, says the national coach. “Dendoncker can be a solution at the back. He has already proven that, also against Poland. Wales is a different game, a different opponent. Leander wants to be a midfielder, but he can help in the defense.” There are also some concerns about Amadou Onana, who is in the selection for the second time. “We have to be careful with Onana, he has been hit at Everton and we have to follow him closely.”

The article is in Dutch

Tags: National coach Roberto Martinez ahead decisive diptych Nations League Eden Hazard exudes energy happiness

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