Torn loyalties in Montreal forward of FIFA World Cup match between Canada and Belgium | Globalnews.ca

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Torn loyalties in Montreal ahead of FIFA World Cup match between Canada and Belgium  | Globalnews.ca

2022-11-23 22:06:19

David Dejean, a twin Belgian-Canadian citizen residing in Montreal, says there is no such thing as a method he’s supporting the Canadian crew and its star participant Alphonso Davies when the 2 nations take to the pitch on Wednesday within the World Cup.

“I’m going to assist Belgium — that’s for positive,” Dejean, who just lately turned a Canadian citizen, mentioned in an interview Tuesday. “Canada is my new dwelling, however I grew up in Belgium. I lived there all of my childhood; so my coronary heart is for Belgium.”

A rivalry is brewing between members of the town’s French-speaking Belgian neighborhood and followers of Canada’s crew, which hasn’t performed within the match since 1986.

Canada enters Wednesday’s recreation in Qatar because the overwhelming underdog, however the nation acquired excellent news Tuesday when it was revealed that winger Davies — the crew’s most harmful participant — has recovered from a hamstring damage and was declared match to play.

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Montreal’s Belgian neighborhood — Statistics Canada says there are roughly 10,000 individuals of Belgian origin within the metropolis — has organized watch events at varied bars round city, together with at Pub Burgundy Lion and at Bier Markt.

Learn extra:

FIFA World Cup: Canadians prepared for 1st recreation towards Belgium

Dejean mentioned he plans to put on his Belgium soccer jersey to work and go away at midday to observe the two p.m. (EST) recreation — the second match for Group F, which additionally contains Morroco and Croatia — with about 30 different Belgians on the Burgundy Lion.

“I’m tremendous pressured for tomorrow, particularly since I’ve loads of Canadian colleagues round me, and we all know that Belgium is the favorite,” he mentioned.

“We all know that we’re imagined to be stronger. So, if we lose, I’m not going to indicate up within the workplace for the following three weeks.”

Belgium is second within the FIFA rankings, and Canada is forty first.

Fellow Belgian Simon Van Wynsberghe has loyalties which can be extra divided than Dejean’s. He has twin citizenship due to his Canadian father however grew up in Belgium and has solely lived in Montreal for a couple of 12 months.

Van Wynsberghe mentioned Canada has a superb likelihood at edging out Belgium in Wednesday’s match. He’s cheering on the Belgian aspect, nonetheless, however he mentioned he wouldn’t be upset if Canada gained.

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READ MORE: FIFA World Cup: Canada faces ‘actually steep’ problem in Qatar. Who’re they enjoying?

“The best way Belgium is enjoying proper now isn’t superb, and Canada, then again, is enjoying very well,” Van Wynsberghe mentioned in an interview Tuesday.

“For me personally, I gained’t be unhappy if Canada wins. I feel it could be good even. Though I do hope that Belgium in the end qualifies for the finals.”

Diogène Ntirandekura, a Belgian of African descent residing in Montreal, mentioned he’s torn between supporting the 2 groups however admits he’s hoping for a Belgian victory.

“Though I’m a bit torn as a result of I reside in Canada, I’m supporting Belgium,” Ntirandekura mentioned in an interview Tuesday.

“However I do hope Canada wins the opposite matches.”

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