Belgium were given notice of the task facing them at the 2014 FIFA World Cup as they lost to fellow finalists Colombia in Brussels.
Entering the game on a wave of optimism having booked their first major finals appearance since 2002, Marc Wilmots' men came down to earth with a bump as Falcao and Victor Ibarbo struck for the South American side after the interval.
Wilmots handed Club Brugge KV full-back Thomas Meunier his international debut and the 22-year-old made an immediate impact, crossing for Christian Benteke, who headed over early on. It was a similar story six minutes before the interval as the Aston Villa FC striker once again directed a headed effort off target, this time from Marouane Fellaini's delivery.
Things swung the way of the visitors in the second period, which was six minutes old when Falcao timed his run to perfection. The AS Monaco FC man, clean through on goal, easily rounded Simon Mignolet to slot in. The lead was doubled in the 66th minute when Belgium failed to clear a looping free-kick into their area, allowing Ibarbo to bring the ball down before smashing his first international goal into the roof of the net.
Mignolet prevented things from getting worse, denying Jackson Martínez from making it three as the clock ticked down, but the result nonetheless leaves Wilmots and his team plenty to ponder ahead of next summer.