A sensational volley by Dries Mertens and a Romelu Lukaku double fired classy Belgium to a 3-0 win against World Cup debutants Panama in Sochi on Monday (Jun 18).
Romelu Lukaku scored twice as Belgium proved too good for World Cup debutants Panama in the opening match in Group G.
After a goalless first half, Belgium, ranked third in the world, finally broke Panama's resistance when Dries Mertens steered in a spectacular volley.
Panama, 55th in the rankings, had a chance to snatch an equaliser but Thibaut Courtois was quick off his line to save Michael Murillo's shot with his legs.
Striker Lukaku made certain of the victory as he scored with a diving header after an exquisite pass from Kevin de Bruyne with the outside of his boot. Lukaku then added a third with a chipped finish after a fine through ball from Eden Hazard.
Belgium take on Tunisia in their second match on Saturday (Jun 23), before Panama are England's second opponents a day later.