Argentina 1-0 Belgium: The papers + Open letter to fans
Sunday papers aren’t much of a feature of the Belgian newspaper landscape with most titles preferring simply to publish weekend editions. A few of the biggest papers have free editions today to mark the Belgians’ elimination from the World Cup after an excellent run to the quarter-finals in Brazil.
Het Laatste Nieuws go with a picture of captain Vincent Kompany and the headline “It has been beautiful” and inside there is a feature on why the future is bright for Belgium with ten reasons to be optimistic.
As vanquished skipper Vincent Kompany looks on at the victorious Argentinians, the headline is as positive as HLN: “What a run! Thank you”
Finally, we have Het Nieuwsblad, which shows Wilmots embracing Lukaku accompanied by the headline “We have enjoyed (it) but the dream is over.”
As a bonus, we have the open letter released this morning by the Belgian FA on the players’ behalf addressed to the country’s wonderful supporters:
Dear best supporters in the world,
When we gathered together on 19 May for the first training session in preparation for the World Cup, we didn’t know precisely what to expect. For seven weeks, we have experienced it together and we have given everything to represent our country and our fans in the best way possible at the highest level of world football.
Despite the fact that we were one of the youngest teams, today we can be very proud to have made our country one of the eight best footballing nations in the world.
We have of course also followed you in Belgium and quite honestly your support and your enthusiasm has been world class. The viewing figures, the squares, the sports halls…It has genuinely been fantastic to see the extent to which you have lived this World Cup with such passion and we assure you that your support has really touched us here.
We thank you from the bottom of our heart for your thousands of tweets, Facebook messages and postcards, for your sleepless nights and for your battle cries and your tears of joy.
A big thank you also to all our supporters who made the trip to Brazil and who went through this unforgettable experience with us. Your presence did not go unnoticed and allowed us to surpass ourselves. Each time we heard “Tous ensemble” resonating throughout the stadia, we all had goosebumps.
We may be still young but we are ambitious. We had really hoped to be part of the best four to take part in either the final or the third-place play-off, hence why we have mixed feelings of pride and great disappointment. We really were very close to achieving our goal…
Now it is time for us to return home. We will leave Brazil tonight, tired but with our heads held high and happy to see our families again come Monday.
It is with great pleasure that we invite you to our second official fan day during which we will have the time to celebrate these past two years with you. Further details will be available shortly.
The Brazilian World Cup has come to an end for us today but we can be very proud of the whole of our campaign. And we can also already dream of a next major tournament for our goal is to qualify for all the major tournaments to come.
That means there will be more unforgettable moments to look forward to. We hope to see you all again in September to close a superb chapter and to begin a new one together.
We cannot find the words to thank you and all we can say is that for us, you are the best supporters in the world.
The Red Devils