Belgium 3-0 Russia: Lukaku hits two as Red Devils start impressively
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Belgium 3-0 Russia: Lukaku hits two as Red Devils start impressively

Belgium trounced Russia 3-0 in their first Euro 2020 match, confirming their status as one of the tournament's favorites.

Goals by Romelu Lukaku and Thomas Meunier in the first half gave them the confidence to play a more controlled second half against a mediocre Russian side.

Lukaku bagged another late in the game.

Christian Eriksen's frightening collapse during the Denmark vs Finland game earlier in the day overshadowed the 10 p.m. EAT kick-off, putting the late game in jeopardy.

Eriksen, fortunately for Denmark and every football fan, reacted to CPR on the field and was awake when he was rushed to the hospital.

Despite concerns for Eriksen in Copenhagen, supporters in St Petersburg regarded the Belgian players with contempt as they took a knee before kick-off, with loud boos reverberating across the stadium while the Russian squad chose to remain standing.

Lukaku, on the other hand, had the ideal response to Russia's fans, scoring Belgium's first goal after just 10 minutes.

Lukaku was initially in an offside position, but a vital touch from a Russian defender put him onside - and the Inter Milan star made no mistake with a ruthless low finish inside the box.

Lukaku then made his way to a pitchside camera and paid tribute to his Inter team-mate, Eriksen, shouting: “Chris, Chris - I love you!”

Both teams lost a player to injury as Timothy Castagne and Daler Kuzyaev clashed heads, but the former’s replacement, Meunier, put Belgium in control of the tie not long after coming on.
 
Russia failed to clear a teasing cross from the left, and Meunier was first to the loose ball to make it 2-0.

Russia tried to get back into the game, but lacked the quality in the final third as Belgium kept their opponents at bay with relative ease - and Lukaku added his second with a great run and near-post finish with two minutes to go.

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