Belgium hosts Wales in the fifth round of the UEFA Nations League this Thursday. The Devils and the Dragons are together in Group 4 of the A division, and enter this event with an imperative to win. Belgium is three points behind the Netherlands, who is in the first place, while Wales sits last in this assembly, with just one point, and they need to win here and stay in the relegation race.
Belgium (-295) is always a favorite at home, and so is this time. The Devils have certain problems regarding the usage of their top players in the clubs, but even so, Roberto Martinez’s unit should have a lot of quality options at all positions.
Some of them might be rested, but as said, Martinez has enough quality replacements in each position. Since the beginning of 2022, Belgium played six events, having three wins, two draws, and a defeat. All but the latest two were with three or more goals.
After losing at home in the UNL opener to the Netherlands, 1-4, Belgium won two events and had a draw. They beat Poland 6-1 at home, snapped a point in Wales, 1-1, and then beat the Polish team 0-1, only this time it was on the road. The Devils play flamboyant and very intense football, with an accent on offense.
Wales (+750) got just one point so far in the UNL, and that was against Belgium at home. But that doesn’t matter at the moment, because the Dragons qualified for the World Cup in Qatar, by them beating Ukraine in the playoffs. That was the only win for the Welsh unit in the past six events.
They’ve opened the UNL against Poland on the road, losing the event, 2-1, but that was due to their desire to keep all the vital players ready for the matchup with Ukraine. After that, Wales lost at home to the Netherlands, 1-2, and played 1-1 against Belgium, before suffering a defeat to Oranje in Amsterdam, 3-2.
Wales plays tough and open football, with them often both scoring and conceding. This didn’t happen just once in the last nine games, and throughout that stretch, the majority of the events were with either 2 or 3 goals.
Romelu Lukaku and Divock Origi aren’t with the team right now. The first is injured and out of shape, while the other has problems with the injury, too.
Wales won’t have Aaron Ramsey and Harry Wilson due to respective injuries. Though, Martinez summoned young teenage star, Luke Harris from Fulham. Harris has only 17 years.
Head to Head
As said, the previous event in Cardiff saw a 1-1 draw. Previously these teams met in the World Cup qualifiers group stage. Belgium was better in the opening meeting at home, 3-1, while the second one finished without winners, 1-1.
Despite not having some of their top attackers, Belgium will win this game, and we expect them to routinely solve the guests from the British island. Our pick for this event is Belgium -1.5, with the odds sitting at -105 as we speak.
Pick: Belgium -1.5 -105
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.