Roberto Martinez kicks off his tenure as Belgium boss with a friendly against Spain on Thursday.
Belgium v Spain - Thursday 19:45
Both these sides had extremely disappointing Euros campaigns and as a result have new managers as attentions now turn to the 2018 World Cup. Roberto Martinez has landed himself a pretty plush role in charge of the talented Belgian squad, assisted somewhat bizarrely by Thierry Henry, while former Porto manager Julen Lopetegui is the man tasked with replacing the legendary Vicente Del Bosque.
Belgium have won nine of 12 unbeaten home games since 2014, though they’ve had some fairly lenient fixtures in that time against the likes of Cyprus, Luxembourg and the mighty Andorra. Indeed, the Belgians proved at the Euros that they were almost flat-track bullies, with comfortable wins over Hungary and the Republic of Ireland, but they struggled when things got tough against the Italians and an inspired Welsh side.
However, Spain themselves have a pretty poor record in away friendlies, losing three of five winless games since 2013. Indeed, when travelling to top-20 ranked sides in friendlies since 2010 they’re just W3-D2-L6, as they failed to score in three of the last five and each had fewer than three goals.
So, in what looks a tricky game to call, with the bookmakers also struggling to separate these teams, we’ll take a chance on at least one team failing to score. That’s been the case in three of the last four meetings between these sides and with both managers keen to impress in their opening games and wary of defeat, this could be a cagey affair.