Belgium full-back Thomas Meunier: 'We are better than England'


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MOSCOW -- Belgium defender Thomas Meunier says his side are better than England, who they will face in a World Cup consolation game on Saturday, and believes finishing third in Russia is the minimum expected of Roberto Martinez's team.

The two countries meet in the third-place playoff in St Petersburg this weekend and the defender is expected to be back in the lineup after missing the 1-0 semifinal defeat by France on Tuesday because of suspension.

"We are better than England. Winning the match is not an obligation but something we want to do. Third place is a minimum for us," he told a news conference at the team's training base in Moscow.

"We beat England in the group phase and so we can do it again."


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Both countries rested regulars for the Group G match in Kaliningrad on June 28 which Belgium won 1-0. The two teams had already secured qualification for the round of 16 before that encounter.

"We want third place for ourselves on a personal level, for those who supported us over the last years and for all the work we did in qualifiers. We have a fantastic squad and to finish on the podium would be something."

Meunier admitted Belgium's "golden generation" of players had likely lost their last chance at World Cup glory after their 1-0 loss in the last four.

"This group could still do something in two years," he said in a reference to the 2020 European Championship. "But in four years' time, many will have left.

"But there are a lot of exciting youngsters coming through who might continue our expedition," the Paris St Germain player added.