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Belgium comfortably dispatch Panama with some beautiful goals

The golden generation of Belgium looking to find success, while Panama hopes to see the Round of 16.

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Belgium v Panama: Group G - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Belgium had a frustrating time in the first half of its World Cup opener against Panama, but the second half went quite a bit better. In the end, the Belgians ran out deserved 3-0 winners, and look well on track to challenge to win Group G.

After a scoreless half, Dries Mertens sparked his team to life in the 47th minute. He’s put his name into the running for goal of the tournament with this sensational, unstoppable looping volley.

The other goals weren’t bad either. Kevin De Bruyne had a spectacular assist for the second, setting up Romelu Lukaku.

Lukaku added another goal not long afterwards, finishing off a quick counter attack.


Belgium and Panama will continue the group stage play with their opening game of the 2018 World Cup. Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. ET Monday at the Fisht Stadium in Sochi, Russia, and you can watch the game on FOX and Telemundo. Online streaming is also available in English through FOX here or in Spanish through Telemundo here.

Eden Hazard will be one of the key players if Belgium’s the golden generation is to live up to the expectations for success. While Panama’s list of key players isn’t too deep, defender Roman Torres is the prime example of Panama’s determination in their first World Cup appearance.


Belgium vs. Panama time, TV channel and streaming info

Time: 11 a.m. ET

Location: Fisht Stadium, Sochi, Russia

TV: FOX, Telemundo

Streaming: Available for free with TV provider through FOX Sports Go (English) or Telemundo Deportes en vivo (Spanish). Also available on subscriptions services like Fubo and Hulu.

Odds: Belgium -1.75 (full odds at OddsShark)

Kevin de Bruyne will look to spring the Belgium attack

This Belgium team is so deep and talented, it’s tough to single out one player. But midfielder Kevin de Bruyne may be the man who decides how far this team goes. Tasked by Belgium manager Roberto Martinez with both springing forward the attack and controlling the center of the field, de Bruyne has the talent to do it all ... but asking that much of one man is still asking a whole lot.

Roman Torres, the absolute unit, will look to boss the Belgian team

I guess it was a story coming in that Roman Torres, at 218 pounds, was the heaviest player in the World Cup. He is a big beefy boy, but it’s not like he’s out of shape — the Seattle Sounders man and Panama captain can move, and if Panama is going to keep the Belgian attack in check, he’s going to be a big part of that.

Belgium vs. Panama news to read before kickoff

Has Roberto Martinez doomed Belgium before the World Cup has begun?

You may remember Radja Nainggolan for having lots of tattoos. You may also remember him for playing really well as Roma underdogged their way to the Champions League semifinals. But you won’t be remembering him for his work at the 2018 World Cup, because he isn’t going. Presumably Belgium’s coach, Roberto Martinez, has his reasons.

Panama’s press box reaction after the team made its first World Cup will give you goosebumps

The USMNT might not have qualified for the World Cup due to a confluence of ineptitude, but maybe we can all feel just a little bit better about Panama qualifying after watching this.