Watch Austria vs Belgium full match replay and highlight.
This is a match of UEFA Euro 2024 Qualification, Group F – Matchday 7.
Kick off: 18:45 UTC Friday Oct 13, 2023.
Austria vs Belgium Full Match Reports
Domenico Tedesco’s Belgium squad clinched their spot in the UEFA European Championships for the third consecutive time following an intense battle against Group F rivals Austria, in which the visitors nearly squandered a three-goal lead.
The first half was a tightly contested affair with chances for both teams, and it was Dodi Lukebakio who broke the deadlock 12 minutes into the contest. Displaying remarkable skill while navigating through the Austrian defense, the 26-year-old forward elegantly danced his way into the penalty area, delivering a precise left-footed strike that found the far corner of Alexander Schlager’s net. Despite his checkered history in international football, this marked Lukebakio’s first-ever goal for Belgium in his 11th cap, and he did so with style. This early goal was the sole difference between the teams at halftime.
However, less than 45 minutes later, Lukebakio secured his second goal for the night, although there was a touch of fortune involved. His long-range effort took a deflection off Austria’s Nicolas Seiwald, diverting it beyond the helpless Schlager in the goal.
In-form Romelu Lukaku wasted no time in getting his name on the scoresheet, capitalizing on Jérémy Doku’s powerful run from deep. Lukaku’s first-time shot had too much power for goalkeeper Schlager and marked his 78th goal for Belgium, surpassing Pelé’s record of 77 international goals, highlighting his invaluable contributions to the European nation.
With a comfortable three-goal lead, Belgium appeared to be cruising toward the European Championships next year. However, the final 20 minutes brought a slight twist, as Konrad Laimer curled in a shot from 20 yards, reducing the deficit. Austria then gained a numerical advantage moments later when Amadou Onana received a red card for a second-yellow card offense against Xaver Schlager.
Adding to the second-half drama, a late but protracted VAR review ultimately favored the home side, with Arthur Theate being adjudged to have handled the ball inside the box. Marcel Sabitzer, a substitute, confidently converted the penalty, setting the stage for a tense final 15 minutes for both teams. However, it proved to be an insurmountable challenge for the Alpine nation. Despite the victory, this performance raises concerns for Tedesco as they prepare for next summer’s Euros.
Dodi Lukebakio was named the Man of the Match.