In a team as good as Belgium, it’s pretty difficult to stand out. We’re talking about a squad that includes Thibaut Courtois, Thomas Meunier, Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard, and Romelu Lukaku, to name a few. In fact, selecting Belgium’s top player wasn’t easy, but in the end, De Bruyne came on top.
Having talent to spare is what makes the Red Devils one of the betting online favorites to win the 2022 World Cup, including Youri Tielemans, Belgium’s under-the-radar player. As the headline reads, Tielemans is a feisty midfielder who has helped Leicester City remain relevant in recent years. He basically can do it all on both ends. So, let’s forget about the superstars and talk about a player on his way to becoming one.
Tielemans’ professional career began in the Belgian Pro League. There, he played four seasons for Anderlecht, one of the tournament’s powerhouses. Overall, he played in 185 games and scored 35 goals. He started to draw attention in the 2016-17 season after scoring 13 goals and helping Anderlecht reclaim the throne. Only Lukasz Teodorczyk scored more goals than him with 22.
That was enough for him to earn an offer from AS Monaco. The Ligue 1 team signed him on a five-year deal for around 25 million euros. Unfortunately for them, he didn’t meet expectations, scoring only six goals in 65 games.
That got him loaned out to Leicester City, where everything began to change. In his first season with the team, he scored three goals in 13 games. That convinced the Foxes to make a push for him. They signed him on a four-year deal for an estimated 32 million.
Since his arrival, Leicester hasn’t been able to win the EPL title again, but Tielemans contributed to the Foxes winning the FA Cup and the Community Shield. He scored the winning goal in the 2020-21 FA Cup Final against Chelsea. Overall, he has scored 24 goals in 162 games.
With the Red Devils
He was called up for the first time in June 2015 for the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifiers against Wales. However, he didn’t make his debut until November. It was in a friendly match against the Netherlands that finished 1-1.
Later, he was included in the 23-man squad for the 2018 World Cup, in which Belgium went all the way into the semifinals. The Red Devils lost 1-0 to France but managed to finish third after defeating England 2-0 in the consolation game. Tielemans played in four games.
Tielemans scored his first goal with Belgium’s national team in March 2019. It was in a UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying match against Russia. He was also included in the squad that represented Belgium in the continental tourney, but the Red Devils didn’t meet expectations once again. They lost 2-1 to Italy in the quarterfinals.
Overall, Tielemans has played 52 games and has scored five goals, one more on the road to the 2020 Euro and three in the UEFA Nations League.
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Belgium in the 2022 World Cup
Winning the World Cup Soccer 2022 won’t be easy. Belgium is in Group F with Croatia, Canada, and Morocco. We’re talking about the 2018 runners-up, the top team in CONCACAF, and one of the best African teams. Even so, the Red Devils dominate the Las Vegas odds to win it at -190. Regarding the World cup odds to win the title, they’re offering a +1200 price.
Individually, Tielemans isn’t among the favorites to win the Golden Boot. However, Lukaku (+1600), De Bruyne (+4000), and Hazard (+5000) are listed. The thing is, they wouldn’t be there without Tielemans, who always has their back.