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World Cup 2018: Nacer Chadli scores last-minute winner in Belgium 3-2 Japan

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One of the best moments of the 2018 FIFA World Cup came courtesy of Belgium winger Nacer Chadli with a last-minute goal against Japan.

Belgium’s 2018 World Cup campaign

Belgium’s 2018 World Cup campaign began with Roberto Martinez’s side playing against England, Panama and Tunisia in Group G. Belgium finished the group on maximum points, with their most impressive win coming on matchday 2 when they defeated Tunisia 5-2.

Their squad was one of the strongest in the competition, featuring the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard, Thibaut Courtois and more.

Belgium and England progressed through Group G, securing their places in the knockout stages of the competition.

Read more: World Cup 2022: Dates, Schedule, Location, Groups, Tickets, Odds And More

Belgium 3-2 Japan

The Round of 16 saw Belgium clash with Japan in what would be one of the games of the tournament at the Rostov Arena.

The first half of the game saw the deadlock remain, but there would be five goals scored in the second half.

The first came three minutes after the interval when a drilled-through ball from Japan’s Gaku Shibasaki found Genki Haraguchi, who smashed a shot past Courtois and into the bottom left corner. 

Four minutes later, Takashi Inui increased the lead to two goals after executing a long-distance strike into the bottom right corner of the Belgium goal.

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However, Belgium soon got themselves back into the game after Jan Vertonghen cushioned a looping header into the net.

Marouane Fellaini grabbed an equaliser five minutes later before Nacer Chadli completed the comeback, continuing Belgium’s World Cup campaign.

A corner from Japan was intercepted by Courtois, who rolled out the ball to Kevin De Bruyne before playing it into Thomas Meunier. 

TOPSHOT – Belgium’s forward Romelu Lukaku (C) celebrates with Belgium’s defender Thomas Meunier (3L) after Belgium’s midfielder Nacer Chadli (R) scored his team’s third goal during the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Belgium and Japan at the Rostov Arena in Rostov-On-Don on July 2, 2018. (Photo by PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE – NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS (Photo credit should read PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP via Getty Images)

Meunier played a low cross into the path of Nacer Chadli, who was free in the box and tapped the ball into the back of the net, breaking Japanese hearts.

TOPSHOT – Belgium’s midfielder Nacer Chadli (R) celebrates with Belgium’s forward Romelu Lukaku and Belgium’s defender Thomas Meunier (C) after scoring his team’s winning goal during the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Belgium and Japan at the Rostov Arena in Rostov-On-Don on July 2, 2018. (Photo by Jack GUEZ / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE – NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS (Photo credit should read JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images)

What happened next?

The 2018 FIFA World Cup saw Belgium secure a third place finish.

Chadli’s goal came in the 94th minute of the game and proved to be the final attacking chance of added time. The former Tottenham Hotspur man etched his name into Belgian folklore, keeping his nation’s hopes alive…

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