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Game on: Lineups and more as Belgium and Algeria kick off Group H


Belgian’s player Vincent Kompany looks on during the 2014 World Cup Group G qualifying football match between Belgium and Wales at King Baudouin stadium in Brussels on October 15, 2013. AFP PHOTO / JOHN THYS (Photo credit should read JOHN THYS/AFP/Getty Images)

AFP/Getty Images

The match kicks off at Noon ET. Here’s what you need to know before the Desert Foxes and Red Devils kick off Group H.

[ MORE Previews: Belgium | Algeria | Group H ]
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Starting lineups

Belgium: Courtois, Alderweireld, Van Buyten, Kompany, Vertonghen, Witsel, Dembele, De Bruyne, Hazard, Chadli, Lukaku

Algeria: Mbolhi, Bougherra (c), Ghoulam, Halliche, Feghouli, Medjani, Bentaleb, Soudani, Taider, Mahrez, Mostefa

Talking points

1. Is Belgium as good as advertised? Head coach Marc Wilmots knows that there’s plenty of variation in the perception of his team.

“The international press have called us an outsider and a favourite at the same time. It is a great pleasure to be back in the competition with players who are hungry and have a desire to achieve.”

2. Did Algeria coach Vahid Halilhodzic get Belgium’s attention with his ‘cheap cars’ comment? There may be no chance of Algeria surprising a Belgian team after the following comments.

“Ok, let’s just say their defenders are no Ferraris but the same goes for ours. Belgium have exceptional qualities and it has been said this is their best ever team. We are going to suffer that we know already. We will suffer on all levels and I tell my boys that their suffering has to be at the highest level if you want to achieve something.”

No big deal?

Expectation: Belgium finds its footing and forces Algeria into the up-tempo battle it has prepared for all month long.

One blogger’s prediction: Belgium answers the bell with a comfortable 2-0 win.

Follow @nicholasmendola