Belgium-Spain friendly called off

17/11/2015  5 Comments  [Jump to last]
Neither Romelu Lukaku nor Kevin Mirallas will see further international action this week after Belgian officials elected not to go ahead with Belgium's friendly with Spain this evening due to security concerns.

Both Everton players featured in the Red Devils' win over Italy on Friday but they will now presumably return to Finch Farm to prepare for Saturday's Premier League match against Aston Villa.

"Taking into account the exceptional circumstances, we cannot take any security risk to our players and fans," the Belgian FA said in a statement following assertions by French investigators that a Belgian national was the mastermind behind Friday's attacks in Paris that claimed the lives of 129 people. Additionally, one of the terrorists who blew himself up has been named as Brussels-born Salah Abdeslam.

While the Belgian FA added that it "deeply regretted" the decision to cancel the game, Spain's manager, Vicente del Bosque, expressed his disappointment:

"We weren't scared. We were calm in the hotel, there wasn't any problem. We trained with tranquillity, we've prepared for the game like any other, but the authorities will have felt they couldn't guarantee the security of everybody, the players and spectators.

"Hopefully there won't be any more suspensions. We're here to play sport and entertain people."

Belgium boss Marc Wilmots supported his federation's decision, however, saying: "A human life is worth more than a game of football. I was informed at 11:30pm last night that we weren't going to play the game, and this morning everyone else was informed."

"Thousands of matches are played all the time, one more or less makes no difference."

England's international friendly with France at Wembley Stadium, one which promises to be an emotional one following the horrific events of Friday, is going ahead as planned this evening. Germany's friendly with the Netherlands in Hannover has been cancelled, however, on safety grounds after a suspicious suitcase prompted the evacuation of the stadium."  


Reader Comments (5)

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Ian McDowell
1 Posted 17/11/2015 at 18:42:11
Germany v Netherland also called off. Stadium is currently being evacuated.
Brian Williams
2 Posted 17/11/2015 at 19:03:15
Cancelling games is exactly what the murdering cowardly scumbags want, but you can hardly blame anyone for making that decision.
Joseph Terrence
3 Posted 17/11/2015 at 19:05:52
Saw that Ian. Terrible, terrible news. Thankfully it seems as though nothing has come of it.

Something must be done.

Jim Bennings
4 Posted 18/11/2015 at 10:29:16
And they seriously think a World Cup in Qatar, ok it's not Syria but it's still bang in terrorist land with Dark Age laws, is that a really great idea?
Anthony Dwyer
5 Posted 20/11/2015 at 00:37:06
At least Rom has had an extended break, he should be itching to blast Villa away.

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