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Belgium

Belgium
René Vandereycken struck from the spot in Belgium's 1980 final loss to West Germany ©Getty Images

Belgium

Best result: runners-up 1980
Coach:
Marc Wilmots
Leading scorers:
all-time – Bernard Voorhoof, Paul Van Himst (30); current – Daniel Van Buyten (10)
Most appearances:
all-time – Jan Ceulemans (96); current – Timmy Simons (93)
Association formed:
1895
Nickname:
Rode Duivels (Red Devils)
Where they play:
Stade Roi Baudouin, Brussels

Belgium ended a 12-year absence from major tournaments with an impressive qualification for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, their surge up the FIFA rankings earning them seeded status for the finals draw. Good times ahead are anticipated for Marc Wilmots' star-studded side, who will hope to match, or perhaps even better, the achievements of previous Red Devils selections. Highlights include a runners-up spot at EURO '80 and fourth place at the 1986 World Cup.

EURO pedigree
Matches played

Overall: P106 W46 D26 L34 F159 A127
Final tournament: P12 W4 D2 L6 F13 A20
Qualifying: P94 W42 D24 L28 F146 A107

Belgium may be back among the elite in the World Cup, but it is now three decades since they last qualified for the UEFA European Championship having been final tournament regulars during the 1970s and early 1980s. They finished third on home soil in 1972 and eight years later went one step closer to lifting the trophy, losing the Rome final 2-1 to a late West Germany goal.

Since then the Red Devils have only managed two more group stage appearances, in 1984 and in 2000, when they were the tournament co-hosts, but failed to progress on both occasions. UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying came too early for Belgium's new wave, Georges Leekens' side never recovering from defeats in their first two Group A games as they finished third, two points shy of Turkey and a play-off spot. Now, though, they are four years older.

Memorable EURO matches
22/06/80: Belgium 1-2 West Germany, 1980 UEFA European Championship final
René Vandereycken's penalty made it 1-1 but Horst Hrubesch's second of the game (88) was decisive.

17/06/72: Hungary 1-2 Belgium, 1972 UEFA European Championship third-place play-off
Goals from Raoul Lambert and Paul Van Himst in Liege sealed third in Belgium's first finals.

13/05/72: Belgium 2-1 Italy, 1972 UEFA European Championship quarter-finals
Van Himst struck as Belgium booked a finals spot at holders Italy's expense after a first-leg draw.

Did you know?
Belgium were the only qualifiers for the 1984 UEFA European Championship to win their qualifying group by more than one point; eventual runners-up Spain advanced on goals scored.

*Last updated on 07/01/14

Last updated: 28/01/14 15.16CET

http://www.uefa.com/teamsandplayers/teams/teama/team=13/profile/index.html#belgium

Club record in UEFA competitions

  • Biggest win:
    14/10/1986, Luxembourg 0-6 Belgium, Luxembourg
  • Biggest defeat:
    16/06/1984, France 5-0 Belgium, Nantes
    25/04/1976, Netherlands 5-0 Belgium, Rotterdam
  • Appearances in UEFA European Football Championship: 14
  • Player with most appearances: 29
    Timmy Simons (BEL)
  • Top scorers: 9
    François Van Der Elst (BEL)
 
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