Marc Wilmots unveils Belgium squad for Euro 2016
Last Updated: 31/05/16 7:29pm
Belgium coach Marc Wilmots has confirmed his 23-man squad for Euro 2016 after being rocked by further defensive injuries on Monday.
The 47-year-old had already seen captain Vincent Kompany and Bjorn Engels ruled out of the tournament in France, and fellow defenders Nicolas Lombaerts and Dedryck Boyata were added to the casualty list on Monday.
Zenit St Petersburg's Lombaerts, who was a contender for a starting spot in the absence of Kompany, has a thigh muscle tear, while Celtic centre-back Boyata was ruled out after tearing a muscle in training.
Wilmots tried to laugh off the problems with some black humour when he announced his squad, saying: "I thought about killing myself yesterday," before clarifying that he was only "joking".
"It's sad for all the boys, but that's life," he added. "The defenders who I have at my disposal are still very good players."
Wilmots called up uncapped Genk defender Christian Kabasele on Monday when he said: "Even with all these injured players, I have a defence with Toby Alderweireld, Jason Denayer, Thomas Vermaelen and Jan Vertonghen. It's not too bad after all."
Belgium, who are second in the FIFA world rankings, open their Group E campaign on June 13 against Italy in Lyon, before also facing Sweden and the Republic of Ireland.
Goalkeepers: Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea), Simon Mignolet (Liverpool), Jean-Francois Gillet (Mechelen).
Defenders: Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham), Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham, Thomas Vermaelen (Barcelona), Jason Denayer (Galatasaray), Jordan Lukaku (Oostende), Thomas Meunier (Club Brugges), Laurent Ciman (Montreal Impact), Christian Kabasele (Genk).
Midfielders: Moussa Dembele (Tottenham), Radja Nainggolan (Roma), Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United), Axel Witsel (Zenit St Petersburg), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City), Dries Mertens (Napoli), Yannick Carrasco (Atletico Madrid).
Forwards: Mitchy Batshuayi (Marseille), Romelu Lukaku (Everton), Christian Benteke (Liverpool), Divock Origi (Liverpool).