Belgium skipper Eden Hazard said his country need to win the World Cup in Qatar to justify the « golden generation » tag they have carried for the past 10 years as they look to deliver the country’s first major trophy.
The 31-year-old Real Madrid forward has captained Belgium since 2015 and will participate in his third World Cup, hoping to go further than their third place at Russia 2018.
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« I have to set the bar high. I’m going to try to do better than in 2018. It’ll be tough because that was already pretty good, » Hazard told FIFA on Monday. « I’m fortunate to be the captain of a great team and a big footballing nation, and so we owe it to ourselves to have high expectations. »
A generation of top players representing some of Europe’s biggest clubs like Hazard, goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku have given hope to a nation of almost 12 million people that they can win a major trophy at last.
« There’s always talk of the ‘golden generation’ but there’s some truth to it. We’ve spent almost 10 years together. Now we’ve got young players starting to come through, » Hazard said.
« Of course, we’ve got an incredible generation of players, but we still haven’t won anything. If we really want to earn that ‘golden generation’ nickname, I think that’s the one thing we still need to do.
« Our collective experience has definitely helped us in previous tournaments, so I hope that it will continue in the same vein for some time yet. »
Belgium kick off their campaign against Canada on Nov 23 before facing Morocco four days later and Croatia on Dec. 1.