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WC Qualification Europe
September 6, 2013
• 3:00 PM
• Hampden Park, Glasgow
Referee: P. Tagliavento
• Attendance: 40284
S. Defour 38'
K. Mirallas 88'
As for Scotland, they now prop up Group A and visit Macedonia on Tuesday as Gordon Strachan's side try desperately to get up the table as they prepare for the Euro 2016 qualifying.
It's over, as Belgium secure a simple victory at Hampden, in many ways handed to them by the home side, who made mistakes on both goals, which see Marc Wilmots side take another step to the World Cup next year.
The visitors are secure and are now just playing out time as their 7,000 strong support are in full voice, counting down the seconds to victory.
GOAL! Game, set and the match to Belgium as Benteke finds Mirallas, after Hanley came out and missed the ball, allowing the Everton man the time and space to roll the ball by Marshall, into the net.
Another Belgium strike and yet another effort from De Bruyne, who makes Marshall work yet again, as he dives to his right to turn the ball away for yet another corner.
De Bruyne has a free kick from 25 yards out, in which he sees Marshall off his line and tries to loft it over Marshall, but the Cardiff stopper gets back to save for a corner.
Despite Belgium clearly being the better team, they seem to be willing to sit on their one goal lead rather than push for a second.
The chances are coming for the Scots, with Brown playing the ball from the left for Rhodes, but his effort goes just wide of goal.
Scotland starting to get forward more, as Martin charges forward with the ball and it eventually makes its way to Forrest, but he is met by a red and yellow wall inside the box.
Whittaker's nightmare at Hampden continues, as this time Kevin Mirallas goes by him before putting yet another cross into the box which Brown intercepts.
Nicolas Lombaerts looks in absolute agony after falling badly while going up for a header with Jordan Rhodes. It looks like the Zenit centre half will have to be replaced.
Belgium more than willing to keep the ball, could there be over-confidence creeping into the their play, remember they're still only a single goal ahead.
The home side are looking a lot more livelier since the introduction of Anya, as he gives support to Whittaker and also offers hope going forward.
De Bruyne is running the show for the visitors this evening, but they are living dangerously by not adding to their lead, because the Scots could snatch something here.
Anya almost becomes the new darling of The Tartan Army as he races down the left wing before playing in a cross that Maloney couldn't finish off, putting over the bar.
Horrible pass from Hanley, slip by Whittaker and Belgium are away, but Defour can't add to his tally as Brown saves the day and makes sure they don't score a second.
The home side get away with another one, as this time De Bruyne is hauled down by Maloney on the edge of the area, but the referee seems willing to let contact happen in this game.
Scotland boss Strachan looking to shake things up and try something different by giving Ikechi Anya his international debut, can the Watford man make the difference.
Yellow CardNicolas Lombaerts
Whittaker almost gets a get out of jail card to use as he receives the ball 30 yards out, before moving forward and having an effort that goes just wide.
An up and under into the Scotland box sees a scramble and the ball break to De Bruyne and he puts in yet another cross which is cleared.
The efforts keep on coming, this time Chadli beats Brown in the left wing and moves forward before having a poor strike at goal.
Lucky escape for Scotland, as Brown looked to have caught Benteke inside the box, but the Celtic skipper gets away with it as the referee waves play on.
Whittaker continuing to have a poor game at left back, as he's caught coming inside, which allows space for Alderweireld, who's cross is saved by Marshall, but yet another warning sign for the Scots.
Belgium get the second half started, 45 minutes away from claiming yet another three points and moving closer to a place at the World Cup next year.
Will Scotland be able to get back on level terms or will Belgium add to their lead. If I was a betting man, I'd say the latter and it'll likely come from a cross.
Scotland find themselves a goal down at the break and it could have been a lot worse as Belgium probably had almost 20 crosses put into the home box, which the defence never looked comfortable with.
The half-time whistle goes to the relief of Gordon Strachan, as his side are nearly cut open again.
Begium now seem content to hold onto their lead for the remainder of the first half, as they know they can open up the Scots at will.
The difference in both sides is clear for everyone inside Hampden to see. While the home side look to move up the park as quick as possible, the Belgians are comfortable in possession, holding onto the ball in order to open up space.
AssistKevin De Bruyne
GOAL! It was bound to happen, Scotland lose a goal as a result of yet another cross, as De Bryune is allowed space on the right to play into Steven Defour, who slides home the opener from 10 yards out.
Wilmots side immediately go up the another end of the aprk and try their own long range effort, from which Axel Witsel hits a dipping volley that Marshall does well to hold onto.
Scotland have their first real opportunity of the game, as Charlie Mulgrew plays in Scott Brown, who from 30 yards out has an effort that whistles just past the visitors goal.
Yet another pair of crosses into the box by Belgium, but they seem to be over hitting their targets, allowing the Scots to clear easily.
CHANCE! De Bruyne picks up the ball in the middle of the park, racing forward and trying a shot from the edge of the area, rather than playing in Felliani, but Marshall saves at the second attempt on the slippery surface.
Christian Benteke receives a pass from Toby Alderweireld inside the box, but Hanley and Steven Whittaker manage to crowd him out before he could get into a dangerous position.
Midway through the first half and it looks like the Belgians are playing with their hosts, as it seems that they could score at anytime, which is bad news for Strachan's side.
Tottenham midfielder Chadli is giving the right side of the Scotland defence all sorts of problems as he keeps trying crosses into the box, this time it's Grant Hanley's duty to clear the ball.
Scotland try a quick free kcik, as Maloney finds Robert Snodgrass in the box, but the Norwich man can't find his feet on the wet Hampden surface to get a shot at goal.
Fellaini living up to his reputation so far this evening, with a couple of clumsy challenges which have seen him booked already. It could be a long night for the Manchester United midfielder.
Yellow CardMarouane Fellaini
Some poor play from Martin at the back for Scotland, as he looks to find Leigh Griffiths with a long ball, but messes it up and ends up playing it out of play.
It's possession football for the visitors just now, with their massive travelling support cheering every touch made by their heroes.
Thibaut Courtois finally made to work in the visitors goal, as Shaun Maloney finds some space of the left to attempt an effort at goal, but the stopper does well to catch at the second attempt.
Yellow CardRobert Snodgrass
Chadli jinks his way past James Forrest at the edge of the area on the left wing and puts a cross in for the giant frame of Marouane Fellaini, but he can't direct his header on target, but the Belgians are getting closer.
First attempt at getting forward by the Scots comes in the form of Alan Hutton, who looks to get in behind Nacer Chadli, but the midfielder eases him away from the ball as it goes out of play.
The group leaders are enjoying a lot of the play early on and Jan Vertonghen feels confident enough to venture forward and attempt a lofted cross into the box, which gives David Marshall his first catch of the game.
Kevin De Bruyne has a cross from the left that's cleared for a corner by Russell Martin, which the Chelsea man takes and goes across the face of the Scotland goal, early scare for the home side.
Scotland get the first half of the game underway.
That's the teams coming out now, next up the national anthems, with the SFA making a change, dropping Amy MacDonald from singing duties and replacing her with Nina Nesbitt.
Quarter of an hour to kick-off, Hampden Park is filling up nicely as home boss Gordon Strachan looks to build towards the Euro 2016 qualifiers, while his opposite number Marc Wilmots is looking to Brazil next year.
Over 7,000 Belgium fans currently inside Hampden, as they look to get a result that will take them closer to qualification, will they do it?
Belgium line-up is: Courtois; Alderweireld, Van Buyten, Lombaerts, Vertonghen; Witsel, Chadli, Fellaini; De Bruyne, Defour; Benteke Subs: Mignolet, Casteels, Ciman, Mertens, Pocognoli, Gillet, Van Damme, Dembele, Lukaku, Simons, Mirallas
Scotland line-up as follows: Marshall; Hutton, Martin, Hanley, Whittaker; Brown, Mulgrew; Forrest, Maloney, Snodgrass; Griffiths Subs: Gilks, Conway, Naismith, Wallace, Adam, Rhodes, McArthur, Bannan, McCormack, Samson, Anya, Greer
Belgian coach Marc Wilmots is without the services of his skipper, Vincent Kompany, while Chelsea star Eden Hazard has failed a fitness test, but he does have a huge depth of talent in his squad to call upon, including Manchester United's deadline day signing Marouane Fellaini.
Despite an encouraging performance against England last month, Scotland go into the game missing key players, with Allan McGregor and James Morrison suffering from injury, while both Darren and Steven Fletcher are not yet fit enough to be considered for selection and Kenny Miller has retired from international football.
While the Scots hopes of making it to Brazil next year went up in smoke months ago, the Belgian side arrive knowing that a victory will take them one step closer to winning the group and automatic qualification.
Good evening and welcome to Goal.com’s live text commentary of the World Cup (Europe) Qualifying Group A fixture between Scotland and Belgium at Hampden Park in Glasgow, my name is Matthew Harold (@MatthewHarold83) and I'll be guiding you through the next 90 minutes.
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