Ahhh, the Belgian generation. How I miss your glories. Who can forget that engaging team from 1920, gold medalist at the Olympic Games?
By the way, legend has it, Czechoslovakia (a country that existed in 1920) abandoned the final in the first half as a sign of protest, after the 65-year-old judge (there was a 65-year-old judge) sent a Czech player to the street (he had no red card still, it was a struggle to send someone out). There are no more protests like they used to. But what a team that was, Bragard, Coppée, Larnoe, known as Rik, what a darling…
Since then, according to quick searches on Wikipedia, Belgium has achieved… nothing. It had a third place in the 2018 World Cup and a fourth in 1986. But these adorable scoundrels eliminated Brazil from the Russian Cup, so they will live forever in our wounded hearts. Not to mention that their technical assistant is still the Frenchman Thierry Henry, the one from 2006.
We fear, cheer, hate, dry and love the so-called “Belgian generation” with its current players.
How not to like your tabloid stories: another legend, a sexy legend, says that an ex-girlfriend of the talented Kevin de Bruyne, the team’s star, took revenge on the player when he found out that he had an affair with her friend. It is like? She had relations with goalkeeper Courtois. They say that the midfielder and the archer still don’t partner up in truco championships. “Okay, okay, okay…”
Imagine a rock band that has been together for a long time. Even with only four people, there are times when a friend can no longer look the other in the face. That’s why there are so many solo releases.
Now let’s get back to football. Imagine a group of 22 people? And only 11 can play, the other 11 watch. Surely, after a few years, one can’t stand the other anymore. That’s why the renewal we have in Brazil is a footballing blessing. Every four years, more than half of the selection changes.
With the so-called Belgian generation, no. The class is practically the same. Same jokes in the locker room, same Belgian samba on the way to the stadium, same little joke about how De Bruyne turns pink when he gets nervous… they already know each other’s scent. It was time to call it quits (grateful, Croatia).
So, dear reader, you will read in this newspaper, and in all others, about the burial of the Belgian generation. “End of the Belgian generation”, “farewell of the talented Belgian generation”, “burial of the red millennials” and other things that might combine synonyms of nightcap with “Belgiquenses”.
But… as you know, football is dynamic.
And you will read, in this and other newspapers two years from now, at the Euro Cup: “The last chance for the Belgian generation”, “Belgian generation seeks the title it lacks”, etc. and such.
And in the 2026 World Cup? No, we are not going to get rid of titles with the Belgian generation. After all, De Bruyne is 31, his French fries friend Courtois is 30, Carrasco is 29, Old Hazard is 31, Young Hazard is 29 (yes, we have two of them). All will be practically the same age as Messi today, or less.
And as the next World Cup will have 48 teams, Belgium is already classified — Gibraltar and Liechtenstein dream.
So today is just a day for the old Belgian generation to cry and drown their sorrows with great Belgian beers. Soon they’ll be back. As the Mexican player on Ted Lasso’s team would say, “soccer is life”.
As a seasoned news journalist, I bring a wealth of experience to the field. I’ve worked with world-renowned news organizations, honing my skills as a writer and reporter. Currently, I write for the sports section at News Bulletin 247, where I bring a unique perspective to every story.