Half century for Defour
Steven Defour has played the full game tonight in Belgium’s 6-0 World Cup qualifying win against Gibraltar and in doing so won his 50th full international cap for his country.
It won’t have been the most difficult game he’s experienced at full international level and the win tonight has equalled Belgium’s best ever international away result.
He didn’t get on the scoresheet but did get an assist on the fourth goal, playing a through ball for Dries Mertens while the other Belgian goals came via a Christian Benteke hat trick, his first just seven seconds into the game, and further goals from Alex Witsel and Eden Hazard.
The road to fifty caps has taken just a few months more than ten years. After representing his country at under-15, under-16, under-17 and under-18 level, he made his full debut in a friendly against Saudi Arabia in Sittard in May 2006. He played almost the entire game before being replaced by Nicolas Lombaerts in the 89th minute.
He stalled at 48 caps, the last of them won in October 2014, but has returned to the squad since signing for Burnley. He made a late substitute appearance in a friendly against Spain last month before getting his first start under Roberto Martinez tonight.
In those fifty games he’s scored just twice for his country. The first of them came in a World Cup qualifier against Estonia in September 2008; he got the second goal in a 3-2 win played in Liège, while his second came in the next World Cup campaign, Belgium’s first in a 2-0 win against Scotland at Hampden Park.Share this page :