Classy Belgians down Serbia
Belgium claim big win in Belgrade
Last Updated: 12/10/12 10:19pm
Kevin Mirallas: Grabbed third for Belgium
Belgium underlined their reputation as an emerging force on the European stage with a comprehensive victory over Serbia in their World Cup qualifier in Belgrade.
Christian Benteke opened the scoring for Marc Wilmots' men in the first half before efforts by Kevin De Bruyne and Kevin Mirallas after the break saw the talented Belgians make it two wins and a draw from their opening three Group A outings.
Defeat for Serbia is their first of the campaign and they remain on four points.
The hosts started well enough with Dusan Tadic's effort forcing a good save from Thibaut Courtois in the seventh minute.
Belgium threatened in the 17th minute when Benteke unleashed an effort from the right side of the area but Zeljko Brkic parried to safety.
Serbia went close a second time in the 32nd minute when Milan Bisevac volleyed over from Zoran Tosic's corner, but just two minutes later the visitors had the opener, De Bruyne swinging a cross over from the right that Aston Villa striker Benteke nodded home from six yards.
Benteke flashed another header over the bar in the 64th minute from Mousa Dembele's centre, but the second goal duly arrived four minutes later, Dembele's assist this time paying dividends as De Bruyne collected the Tottenham midfielder's cross before firing home.
Courtois saved twice in the space of a minute from Tadic and Marko Scepovic as Serbia pushed to set up a grandstand finish, but the hosts just could not make the breakthrough and Belgium wrapped up the points in the first minute of stoppage time when Dries Mertens crossed for Mirallas to turn the ball home from six yards.
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Fri 12th Oct - Group F
Russia1 - 0Portugal
Luxembourg0 - 6Israel
Fri 12th Oct - Group I
Finland1 - 1Georgia
Belarus0 - 4Spain
Fri 12th Oct - Group B
Czech Rep3 - 1Malta
Armenia1 - 3Italy
Bulgaria1 - 1Denmark
Fri 12th Oct - Group C
Faroe Islands1 - 2Sweden
Kazakhstan0 - 0Austria
Rep Ireland1 - 6Germany
Fri 12th Oct - Group E
Albania1 - 2Iceland
Switzerland1 - 1Norway
Slovenia2 - 1Cyprus
Fri 12th Oct - Group G
Liechtenstein0 - 2Lithuania
Slovakia2 - 1Latvia
Greece0 - 0Bos & Herz
Fri 12th Oct - Group D
Turkey0 - 1Romania
Holland3 - 0Andorra
Estonia0 - 1Hungary
Fri 12th Oct - Group H
Moldova0 - 0Ukraine
England5 - 0San Marino
Fri 12th Oct - Group A
Serbia0 - 3Belgium
Macedonia1 - 2Croatia
Wales2 - 1Scotland
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group A
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group B
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group C
|4||Republic of Ireland||10||14|
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group D
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group E
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group F
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group G
|1||Bosnia and Herzegovina||10||25|
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group H
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group I