FIFA World Cup 2018: Romelu Lukaku ruled out for Belgium’s game against England

Belgium will be without Romelu Lukaku for their match against England on Thursday. Roberto Martinez has confirmed that the Manchester United star is on the mend but will not be risked in the final Group G game in Kaliningrad.

Lukaku missed training this week as he was given time to recover by the Belgian medical staff. He picked up an ankle injury during the 5-2 win over Tunisia last Saturday.

That win secured their place in the knockout stage. Belgium and England now face-off on the final day to see who finishes on top of the group.

Speaking in his pre-match press conference, Roberto Martinez played down concerns that Lukaku will be out for a long time. He confirmed that the striker is back to full fitness but playing him vs England might be a bit of a risk.

“He had a really difficult knock against Tunisia and probably Thursday is one day too early, but I don't think it is going to take any longer than that. We had very good news on the scan. There was no further damage, but it is still uncomfortable.” said Martinez.

Continuing on the same topic, Martinez said, “I don't think he will be training on Wednesday, and I think we will make a final assessment tonight in order for him to be involved or not. At the moment, it is still in (the) recovery phase.”

Today's game will be the third meeting between the two sides. England won 1-0 in the 1990 edition, and the other one ended in a 4-4 draw, back in 1954!

The Three Lions have a crazy head-to-head record vs the Belgian side. Of the 21 matches played between the two teams, England have lost just once – back in 1936!  Of the other games, they have won 15 and drawn 5.

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