Written By Onyeka Daniel

Belgium will begin their Euro 2024 campaign against Slovakia in Group E. This team will be hoping to do better than their golden generation of players that failed to win any major trophy, and for that to happen, they have to start strong from the get go with Slovakia will come into the game as underdogs.


While much of those players have since retired, there are still a handful of them remaining in this current team, with Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku who was named captain after Eden Hazard had retired, still carrying the team.

Going into this tournament, the Red Devils remain unbeaten under Domenico Tedesco. However, his credentials will definitely be tested when they kickoff their campaign. This is now their third successive appearance in the Euros, with each of the last two seeing their fabled ‘golden generation’ reaching the quarter-finals.

The hope is that they can finally get their hands on the trophy, even though they’re not one of the favorites to lift the trophy. Just like their opponent, Slovakia are also making their third successive appearance at the Euros.

They made a debut as an independent nation back in 2016, and despite winning their opening game of the 2020 edition against Poland, they were eliminated at the group stage after following it up with two defeats.

That eventually cost manager Štefan Tarkovič his job and was replaced by Francesco Calzona who has helped them put together an impressive qualifying campaign which included just two defeats, both coming against Portugal.

They are considered minnows in the group but are more than capable of springing a surprise, especially when underestimated. Calzona will be hoping to have a better tournament than he had with Italian Serie A side, Napoli towards the end of the just concluded season.

For Tedesco, the aim is simple, having a strong base/defense and efficient attack to back it up, held by a midfield that also combines both qualities. Perhaps, that is why even his full-backs (Theate and Castagne) are capable of playing in the centre-back position. In the midfield, the likes of Onana and Mangala will give them a solid base while De Bruyne and Youri Tielemans will offer them offensive firepower, alongside their wingers.

Read Also: Euro 2024: A Quick Slide Into Group E

Head To Head

Both teams have never clashed in an official game, but they’ve met three times, all friendly matches. The first two ended in a draw, 1-1 (2002 and 2006) while Belgium won the most recent encounter in 2013, 2-1, courtesy of goals from Eden Hazard and Dries Mertens.

Key Players

Captain Lukaku will be hoping to have a better tournament than the last as this could be his last chance at winning a major trophy at country level, same for De Bruyne and Jan Vertonghen. The likes of Leandro Trossard, Jeremy Doku and Dodi Lukebakio should bring their dribbling, flair and trickery to help enhance their attack.

For Slovakia, PSG defender Milan Skriniar will be their inspiration, but it will most likely be up to the trio of Juraj Kucka, Stanislav Lobotka and Ondraj Duda to help keep the midfield strong.


This should be a win for the Red Devils if they can get things right. A lot will depend on Lukaku and how he leads the attack as Slovakia will be looking to defend deep and hit them on the break. A brace from Lukaku to seal a 3-0 win.

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