Panama head into the tournament with obvious questions as to how they’re going to register a goal across their group stage encounters, with just nine from 10 qualifiers which saw defender Roman Torres finish as joint top scorer with a grand total of two. Belgium have kept a clean sheet in four of their last five matches as they’ve scored 12 times, and the win to nil is banker material in one of the biggest mismatches this summer.
While Panama have struggled going forward, Belgium have had no such problems as they plundered 43 goals in qualification, winning to nil in six out of 10 games. That’s a real concern for Panama, especially when considering their record against the better sides. They’ve played 16 matches on foreign soil (either neutral or away matches) since 2014 against teams we had ranked in the world’s top 15 and they’ve won none of those while being beaten 12 times and failing to score 11 times. That sample includes 4-0 defeats to Brazil, 5-0 to Argentina and a 6-0 hammering by Switzerland earlier this year. As such, Belgium appear set for a big win and, indeed, the Red Devils have scored at least four times in 10 of their 25 competitive matches since the last World Cup have seen at least four goals, so the 4-0 correct score is an attractive longshot.
Lukaku is the spearhead of this Belgium attack and with Hazard possibly being rested for this after limping off against Costa Rica, his role of main marksman will only be accentuated. He bagged 11 goals in just eight appearances in the qualifiers, and with five strikes in four outings in 2018 so far, we’d have him at a shorter price to find the net.