Mirallas strikes in Belgium's draw with Russia

Tuesday 28 March 2017  34 Comments  [Jump to last]
Kevin Mirallas scored but Roberto Martinez's Belgium couldn't hold on to a two-goal lead in Sochi.

Making a rare start for his country in this evening's friendly against Russia, Mirallas levelled the scores at 1-1 when he successfully converted from the penalty spot after 17 minutes to cancel out the hosts' early goal.

Christian Benteke then struck two quick goals to put the Red Devils into a 3-1 lead but Aleksey Miranchuk halved the lead with 15 minutes to go before Aleksandr Bukharov equalised in stoppage time.

Mirallas was replaced by Dries Mertens midway through the second period while Romelu Lukaku came on for Benteke with 13 minutes to go.

Meanwhile, Everton's on-loan winger Gerard Deulofeu celebrated his return to the senior Spain squad with an assist and a goal.

The 23-year-old stepped off the bench to set up David Silva for the opener against France and then slotted home a left-wing cross that was initially chalked off for offside by the linesman but was then given following a video review.  

Reader Comments (34)

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Mike Berry
1 Posted 28/03/2017 at 19:03:47
Pleased for Super Kev, but Belgium could not hold a 2-goal lead? Hmm... some parallels here to Everton under Martinez, I think.
Jay Harris
2 Posted 28/03/2017 at 19:19:13
The Martinez syndrome is beginning to take effect.
Dermot Byrne
3 Posted 28/03/2017 at 19:20:18
Lukaku not starting. Must be the pressure of signing a new contract with us. You know, I may be mad but still think he is staying.
Andy Meighan
5 Posted 28/03/2017 at 19:37:11
Sounds familiar
Tony Draper
6 Posted 28/03/2017 at 19:41:48
"Roberto Martinez (insert team name here) couldn't hold on to a two-goal lead."


Ian McDowell
7 Posted 28/03/2017 at 20:03:18
Roberto Martinez not the man you want when 3-1 up with 15 minutes to go.
Oscar Huglin
8 Posted 28/03/2017 at 20:08:06
Still baffled that Bobby's leading Belgium.
Craig Fletcher
9 Posted 28/03/2017 at 20:08:51
Salvaging a draw when on the cusp of victory. Ah, Roberto. Please don't ever change. :)
Eddie Dunn
10 Posted 28/03/2017 at 20:34:12
Bill Gienapp
11 Posted 28/03/2017 at 20:35:17
The jokes honestly write themselves.
James Hughes
12 Posted 28/03/2017 at 20:41:33
Lukaku only played the last 13 minutes, so him and Kev just have a long journey home now.
Kristian Boyce
13 Posted 28/03/2017 at 21:20:44
So history repeats itself. Belgium look world class in their first few games; then, after his coaching really settles in, they can't defend to save their lives.
Paul Birmingham
14 Posted 28/03/2017 at 21:32:10
As long as they both come back unscathed physically and mentally, that would be a good tonic for the next game.

Let's hope BBS has not brain washed them with any delusional playing philosophy for Saturday.

Eugene Ruane
15 Posted 28/03/2017 at 21:38:35
Spain 1-0 down, Geri comes on as sub, wins a pen 1-1, scores the second, now 2-1 to Spain with 10 mins left.
Brian Harrison
16 Posted 28/03/2017 at 21:39:23
Just watching the France and Spain game. Deulofeu only on 2 minutes, wins a penalty which Silva converts.

Also, they are using video technology in this game, France had a goal disallowed by the video ref. Only took a minute for the video ref to contact the ref and disallow the goal, and it was the correct decision but very difficult for the ref or linesman to see the player offside.

Geoff Trenner
17 Posted 28/03/2017 at 21:40:11
Eugene, it is 2-0 Spain.
Plato Stavrinos
18 Posted 28/03/2017 at 21:41:42
Funes Mori just been stretched off for Argentina, looks like knee injury!!!!
Ciarán McGlone
19 Posted 28/03/2017 at 21:47:03
Deulofeu... the £50 mill player in waiting... Oh, how they all laughed!
Barry Rathbone
20 Posted 28/03/2017 at 21:51:10
Hope Bobby does well with Belgium; he brought magic back to Goodison with extraordinary loans like Lukaku, and Deulofeu plus the signings of McCarthy and Barry. Developing Stones and Barkley gave us half a new first team, demonstrating what new blood and adventure could bring.

When he couldn't repeat the trick in the next season and turf the rest of the old guard,he was done. But how many loans are there like Lukaku and Deulofeu? In the circumstances, I just don't get why some hate the fella.

James Hughes
21 Posted 28/03/2017 at 21:52:16
Plato, I hope that is fake news.
Plato Stavrinos
22 Posted 28/03/2017 at 21:54:08
Unfortunately not James, Watching the game on Tv!!
Chris Leyland
23 Posted 28/03/2017 at 22:00:21
Deulofeu, although prolific at Under-21 level for his country, like Franny Jeffers was, is actually playing his 2nd game for Spain, so isn't in the same league as Jeffers was who has a goal a game international record at senior level.
Ciarán McGlone
24 Posted 28/03/2017 at 22:46:08
Deulofeu isn't a striker... and England isn't Spain.
Sam Hoare
25 Posted 28/03/2017 at 22:51:03
I miss Del Boy. He was frustrating and inconsistent but still had that potential to do something... magic.

I wonder if RK would have him back. Not that he'd want to come.

Chris Leyland
26 Posted 28/03/2017 at 23:05:50
Ciaran – That explains why I keep getting bollocked in work when I try and have a siesta...
Anthony Dwyer
27 Posted 28/03/2017 at 23:20:36
Geri has to be brought back and given a strict fitness plan; he's too talented to let slip through our fingers without extra efforts.
Don Alexander
28 Posted 29/03/2017 at 00:41:01
Brilliant, Chris Leyland! :)
Gary Russell
29 Posted 29/03/2017 at 01:47:19
Rugby union started using video replay, now call TMO, in 2001. It proved a sound and common-sense option from the off. Last night's game is the first time I've ever seen football use it.

Gerard's goal chalked correct, and how many goals have we seen in the last 16 years that should have never stood, that changed games and won cups etc. Why has it taken so long?

Dan Davies
30 Posted 29/03/2017 at 01:54:24
Gary expect the TMO revolution to start taking off soon. Starting with offside judgements.
John Pierce
31 Posted 29/03/2017 at 04:18:53
If this type of technology must come into the game (sigh, as I'm deeply against it), then surely it must be integrated to a challenge system.

One per team; once lost, that's your lot. The numbers of potential incidents in a football game are too numerous to warrant a review every time, no matter how slick. Otherwise, it's a fishing expedition.

The system as such is surely there for the howler, not the marginal decision?

Take Geri's goal for Spain tonight, sure the call wasn't right but it was so marginal.... why stop the game?

We are officially 'on' the slippery slope, gathering speed.

Bob Parrington
32 Posted 29/03/2017 at 10:16:02
Dermot – Me too! Gut feel but it is said there are more neurons in the gut than in the brain. :)
Bob Parrington
33 Posted 29/03/2017 at 10:20:03
Barry (#20) – I reckon I can see the bulge in your cheek from your tongue on this one!! Ha Ha!
Brian Wilkinson
34 Posted 29/03/2017 at 15:24:08
How many times in our history have we been duffed by a wrong decision, how many penalties do Everton actually get over the seasons?

This could give us a level pegging if tech comes in. Not sure the big boys will welcome it with open arms.

Peter Fearon
35 Posted 30/03/2017 at 16:04:58
Deulofeu couldn't get a look-in in a team struggling for creativity and spontaneity, yet he has won raves in Milan and starred in the Spanish national team. Now Barca may want him back?

Something is wrong with Koeman's judgement on this one. We need thoroughbreds like Deulofeu, not just drays and work horses. Koeman obviously told him he wasn't interested in creativity.

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