Is England vs Belgium on TV? Channel, time and how to watch Lionesses
The Lionesses bagged all three points after winning 1-0 in front of a sold-out home crowd.
Lauren Hemp struck early to secure the win, but many criticised England’s lack of goals. The Lionesses dominated possession and had plenty of shots – but were unable to give the 28,000-strong crowd a second goal.
The Netherlands sit at the top of the group – on goal difference. They will be heading to Scotland on Tuesday where they’ll be looking for another win.
England’s performance in the Nations League is crucial as a place in the Olympics is at stake for Team GB.
The four group winners in League A (which England are in) will meet in the semi-finals and the two finalists will join France as the 2024 Olympic Games’ European representatives.
When is it?
England take on Belgium at the King Power at Den Dreef Stadium in Leuven on Tuesday 31 October at 7.30pm GMT.
How can I watch it?
The Nations League match will be shown live on ITV4 and on the streaming service ITVX, with coverage starting at 6.45 pm GMT.
Fran Kirby returned during the first match against Belgium – her first England performance in a year having undergone knee surgery.
Lauren James was ruled out of both games against Belgium with a concussion.
England 2-1 Belgium
Belgium will continue to be a threat and will likely be emboldened by having the support of the home crowd. But the Lionesses are no strangers to performing in front of a hostile crowd. We think England will have enough class to get through and secure all three points – but they must be clinical in front of goal going forward.
England need big performance
The team was always likely to suffer a dip in performance following the draining World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. The team made it through to the final, where they lost 1-0 to Spain.
It was a physically and no doubt mentally draining tournament and the tight turnaround to this season barely gave players time to recover.
But they have to refocus quickly and put the summer behind them.
Their performance in the Nations League so far has been patchy.
But, after an unconvincing 2-1 win over Scotland and a 2-1 defeat by Holland last month, Friday’s win over Belgium showed England are finding their feet again. The 1-0 scoreline suggested a tight affair but they had 71 per cent possession and 23 shots on goal.
England boss Sarina Wiegman wants her team to be more clinical tonight, with the Lionesses needing a statement performance to help them get back into their groove.
“Obviously after losing a World Cup Final it is sometimes un-motivating to wake up and turn up to training every day,” said midfielder Georgia Stanway ahead of the game.
“I feel we have hit the ground running this camp. Everybody has been firing in training. We have got people back, we’ve got Fran [Kirby] back, which is also a real highlight for us.”
Goals have been an issue for England during the Nations League – but a big performance tonight could see them top the table.
They’re currently in second place in Group A with the Netherlands on top on goal difference, the Lionesses will need to start clicking again before they meet the Dutch in a potential group decider at Wembley in December.
Only the group winners will reach the Nations League semi-finals next February, with the teams who reach the final qualifying for next summer’s Olympics.