BRUSSELS • With the first option of the pilot, Romelu Lukaku, he set aside the ham injury, it was the perfect opportunity for Michi Batshuayi to play coach Roberto Martínez.
And the 25-year-old took their chance with aplomb, scoring a tie in a 2-0 win against Iceland on Thursday to push the Red Devils to the top of the Uefa Nations League Group 2.
Batshuayi wasted two occasions at the opening of 20 minutes, but Martinez trusted that the Valencia striker would come well in the end.
"In the first semester, Batshuayi experienced some setbacks," Martinez told the VTM station.
"It was well done for the opening goal. I'm happy that he scored twice, but he also played a good game. They were very pleased with his performance."
The world number 1 Belgium had the vast majority of possession, but fought for more than an hour to overthrow a rear row and organized Iceland at the King Baudouin Stadium.
Chelsea's star, Eden Hazard, who played alongside his brother Thorgan on the left, finally cleared the defense of visitors in the 65th minute when his cross perfectly weighted found Thomas Meunier, who just had to hit the ball to Batshuayi before an open goal
Iceland, who knew they were relegated before the game on Thursday, was more intentional in the second half and could have matched, but Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois saved the shot by Albert Gudmundsson with his legs.
Batshuayi sealed the victory in the 81st minute when he launched a stopper after Iceland goalkeeper Hannes Halldorsson let out a shot from substitute Hans Vanaken.
Belgium, who occupies the second position of group 2 with nine points, will travel to Switzerland for their last game of pool tomorrow, just needing a draw to seal their bunk at the UN final in June next year.
Belgium defeated the 2-1 victory over Switzerland last month, but Martinez anticipates strong resistance tomorrow.
"I expect a very tough game. They are a very strong tactical team who use the players in their best system," said the Spanish.
"They are playing at home, they have a good time in the League of Nations. We expect the same level of performance as in the game of Iceland."