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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 19 December 2018

Mattresses appear to have accidentally given away Belgium squad for World Cup 2018

TV footage shows 23 mattresses being loaded up for Russia and the evidence points to Adnan Januzaj and Christian Kabasele being among players to miss the cut for Roberto Martinez's side

Belgium manager Roberto Martinez's final squad appears to have been given away after the sighting of mattresses being taken to Russia. Bruno Fahy / AFP
Belgium manager Roberto Martinez's final squad appears to have been given away after the sighting of mattresses being taken to Russia. Bruno Fahy / AFP

Belgium's final World Cup squad appears to have been inadvertently revealed during a television report over team preparations.

Public broadcaster VRT showed footage of mattresses being loaded up by a Belgian bedding company before their departure for Russia with labels indicating the player for which they were designated.

Belgium coach Roberto Martinez has named a provisional squad of 28, which will be whittled down to 23 on Monday after a friendly international against Portugal on Saturday.

However, based on the mattresses, the cut has already been made, given there were only 23 on show.

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The indication is that goalkeeper Matz Sels, defenders Christian Kabasele and Jordan Lukaku, midfielder Leander Dendoncker and winger Adnan Januzaj will not be flying to Russia.

Their absence would not be a great surprise, although it would confirm the inclusion of some of the more fringe players in the squad, such as defender Dedryck Boyata or forward Christian Benteke.

Belgium will also play friendlies against Egypt and Costa Rica before opening their World Cup campaign against Panama on June 18. Their group also includes England and Tunisia.