On eleven October 1900, Beerschot AC honorary president Jorge Díaz introduced that Antwerp would host a series of challenge matches between Europe’s finest soccer teams. After some organisational problems, on 28 April 1901, Beerschot’s pitch hosted its first tournament, by which a Belgian A-squad and a Dutch B-group contested the Coupe Vanden Abeele. Belgium gained, and beat the Netherlands in all three follow-up matches; FIFA doesn’t recognise these results as a result of Belgium fielded some English gamers. On 1 May 1904, the Belgians played their first official match, towards France at the Stade du Vivier d’Oie in Uccle; their draw left the Évence Coppée Trophy unclaimed.
On sixteen November 2019, for the first time in its history the team topped the World Football Elo Ratings, after a 1–four away win over Russia during the Euro 2020 qualifiers. Belgium’s nationwide team have participated in three quadrennial main soccer competitions. It appeared in the end phases of thirteen FIFA World Cups and five UEFA European Championships, and featured at three Olympic football tournaments, including the 1920 Olympic tournament which they gained. Other notable performances are victories over four reigning world champions—West Germany, Brazil, Argentina and France—between 1954 and 2002. Belgium has lengthy-standing football rivalries with its Dutch and French counterparts, having played both groups almost every year from 1905 to 1967. The squad has been known as the Red Devils since 1906; its fan club is known as “1895”.
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A home Euro 2012 qualifier was given the theme of respect for range in 2010; this UEFA-supported action was part of the European FARE Action Week. Ex-Red Devil Dimitri Mbuyu—the primary black Belgium player —was engaged as godfather, and different foreign, current, and former footballers who performed within the Belgian prime division participated. In 2018, 4 nationwide staff gamers spoke up in opposition to homophobic violence, in a video clip made by organisation Kick It Out. After two matches as interim coach, Wilmots agreed to switch Leekens as manager. Following his appointment, the group’s outcomes improved, such that some overseas media regarded it as one other Belgian golden generation. The young Belgian squad qualified as unbeaten group winners for the 2014 World Cup finals, and earned Belgium’s second-ever place in a World Cup quarter-finals with a 4-match winning streak.
At the three 1930s World Cups, the Red Devils were aligned in a recent 2–3–5 “pyramid”. In 1954, Doug Livingstone’s squad played in a 3–2–5 “WM” arrangement during World Cup matches. Throughout most of their event matches within the 1970s, the Eighties and the 1990s, the group played in a four–4–2 formation. Multiple events had been organised for the followers in the course of the squad’s peak recognition within the 2010s.
Adidas is the producer since 2014, and closed a sponsorship take care of the RBFA till 2026; it was additionally the provider from 1974 to 1980, and from 1982 to 1991. Former package producers are Umbro , Admiral (1981–1982), Diadora (1992–1999), Nike (1999–2010) and Burrda (2010–2014). The group’s performance improved through the early 1970s, under supervisor Raymond Goethals. Fully wearing white, as the White Devils, Belgium had their first victories at World and European Championships at the 1970 World Cup and Euro 1972. En route to that Euro appearance, their first, they eradicated reigning European champions Italy by winning the two-legged quarter-ultimate on mixture. At the end stage, they completed third by successful the comfort match in opposition to Hungary.
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At the eve of the World Cup in 2002, Belgium defeated reigning world and European champions France. During that World Cup, Belgium defeated Russia and tied with co-hosts Japan and Tunisia to achieve the round of 16. During the nationwide participant career of forward Paul Van Himst, essentially the most-praised Belgian footballer of the 20th century, Belgium took third place at UEFA Euro 1972. In the first interval, which lasted from the 1980s to the early 1990s, the group completed as runners-up at UEFA Euro 1980 and fourth within the 1986 World Cup.
- Top stars corresponding to Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku, Christian Benteke, Thibault Courtois and Kevin de Bruyne are all a part of the exciting group of Belgians who came through together.
- Belgium qualified for UEFA Euro 2016 with a match to spare in October 2015, and took the highest spot in the FIFA World Rankings for the first time in November 2015, to remain first for five months.
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Under Wilmots, Belgium managed to qualify for the 2014 World Cup where the staff misplaced towards Argentina within the quarter finals. After one other qualification for the 2016 European Championships underneath Wilmots and a subsequent elimination in the quarter finals in opposition to Wales, Wilmots was changed by Roberto Martinez. Martinez led Belgium during a successful 2018 World Cup, reaching third place total after being eliminated within the semi finals by France.
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Just earlier than the kick-off of a 2014 World Cup home qualifier, Belgium’s footballers saw a first tifo banner, sized 10.5 by 11.5 metres depicting a devil within the nationwide colours. The presence of many Belgian players in top leagues abroad, such because the Premier League, and promising results under Marc Wilmots, increased followers’ enthusiasm and perception in a profitable World Cup marketing campaign. In April 2014, the VRT began transmitting a 9-piece, behind-the-scenes documentary in regards to the national group filmed through the 2014 World Cup qualifiers, titled Iedereen Duivel . Cable broadband supplier Telenet broadcast an eight-part documentary about particular person gamers titled Rode Helden .