Romelu Lukaku

A Historic Defeat for Belgium As Lukaku Was Denied Twice By VAR


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Romelu Lukaku was twice denied by VAR as Belgium suffered what was statistically the biggest upset in European Championship history after losing 1-0 to Slovakia.

Domenico Tedesco’s Red Devils are third in the FIFA world rankings and with Slovakia 48th, the difference between the sides is the largest in the competition’s history.

Slovakia took the lead in the seventh minute when Manchester City winger Jeremy Doku gave the ball away inside his penalty area and although goalkeeper Koen Casteels saved Robert Bozenik’s initial effort, Ivan Schranz was there to convert the rebound from a tight angle.

Lukaku had a few chances to equalise either side of half-time and thought he had finally found the leveller just before the hour mark when he converted Amadou Onana’s header back across goal from close range, only for VAR to highlight the striker had strayed fractionally offside.

Substitute Johan Bakayoko was denied by an exceptional goalline clearance from David Hancko minutes later, as both teams went in search of the game’s second goal.

Lukaku and Belgium thought it had finally arrived with four minutes of regulation time remaining when the country’s record goalscorer emphatically converted Lois Openda’s pull-back, only to see VAR once again scupper their celebrations, this time because of handball in the build-up.

Belgium will look to get their campaign back on track on Saturday when they face a Romania side who defeated Mykhailo Mudryk’s Ukraine 3-0 earlier today.

The Red Devils and Ukraine will then conclude their group against each other on Wednesday, with the top two automatically qualifying for the round of 16, plus the four best third-placed sides in each pool progressing.


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