Eleven Premier League players feature in Marc Wilmots' squad for next week's friendly and 17-year-old PSV starlet Zakaria Bakkali earns his first national call-upBelgium coach Marc Wilmots has named his 25-man squad ahead of next week’s friendly versus France.
The squad contains 11 players from the Premier League, including Chelsea trio Kevin de Bruyne, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku and Tottenham’s Nacer Chadli, Mousa Dembele and Jan Vertonghen.
There were suprises, however, with 17-year-old PSV striker Zakaria Bakkali handed his first international cap, while Thorgan Hazard has been left out of the squad following a troublesome start to his loan spell with Zulte Waregem from Chelsea in which he was handed the captaincy before being asked to hand it back.
Thomas Vermaelen was overlooked as he continues his recovery from injury, while Torino goalkeeper Jean-Francois Gillet is serving a three and a half year ban for match-fixing while with Bari.
Belgium have won all five of their matches in 2013 and will look to fine-tune their team ahead of a crucial World Cup 2014 qualifier in Scotland on September 6, as they try to hold off pressure from Croatia to claim top spot in Group A.
Goalkeepers Koen Casteels (Hoffenheim), Thibaut Courtois (Atletico Madrid), Simon Mignolet (Liverpool)
Defenders Toby Alderweireld (Ajax), Laurent Ciman (Standard), Guillaume Gillet (Anderlecht), Vincent Kompany (Manchester City), Nicolas Lombaerts (Zenit Saint-Petersburg), Sebastien Pocognoli (Hannover), Daniel Van Buyten (Bayern Munich), Jelle Van Damme (Standard), Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham)
Midfielders Nacer Chadli (Tottenham), Kevin De Bruyne (Chelsea), Steven Defour (Porto), Moussa Dembele (Tottenham), Marouane Fellaini (Everton), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Timmy Simons (Club Brugge), Axel Witsel (Zenit Saint-Petersburg)
Attackers Zakaria Bakkali (PSV Eindhoven), Christian Benteke (Aston Villa), Romelu Lukaku (Chelsea), Dries Mertens (Napoli), Kevin Mirallas (Everton)