Belgians quick to play down Eden Hazard fears


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Belgium manager Roberto Martinez was quick to play down any fears over an injury to captain Eden Hazard following his side’s 4-1 friendly win over Costa Rica.

The Red Devils completed their World Cup preparations with a come-from-behind success but enthusiasm was dampened when Hazard limped off after 70 minutes.

Romelu Lukaku scored two and made one as Belgium beat their Central American opponents, who led early through Bryan Ruiz.

Dries Mertens equalised before a brace from Manchester United forward Lukaku, who then teed up Michy Batshuayi for the fourth.

Hazard hobbled off after taking a blow to the foot but his manager isn’t overly concerned ahead of Belgium’s World Cup opener against Panama on Monday.

“Eden is okay, he had a little trouble, but it’s nothing to worry about,” Martinez said in his post-match press conference.

“I really enjoyed his performance. He was sharp and strong, he was majestic.

“At the end he just came off because he had a little bit of a dead leg, a little bit of a knock on his leg.”

The Red Devils are on an 19-match unbeaten run ahead of their Group G journey in Russia, which will also see them facing Tunisia and England.

Lukaku feels their form going into the tournament is crucial and he expects them to improve.

“I think we have made progress. We did not lose, it’s important. We scored a lot of goals tonight,” he said.

“We will still progress before the match against Panama and we will give 120 per cent against them. We will continue to make progress later.”

Belgium are 12.00 to win the World Cup and are 1.80 to win Group G.

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