England will be a team others are “frightened of” in the World Cup’s knockout stages if they beat Belgium on Thursday, says Dennis Wise.
After securing a place in the last 16 with wins over Tunisia and Panama, England continue their campaign against Roberto Martinez’s men in a meeting which will determine who tops Group G.
Former England midfielder Wise feels a win against Belgium would send out a powerful message to the teams remaining in the competition.
“I think Gareth [Southgate] will want to win this game for sure. Carrying the momentum, I think if we go and beat Belgium a lot of teams will be frightened of us, really frightened of us,” he told Sky Sports News.
“Belgium are the one team I’m looking at. Along with Mexico, Germany and Brazil slowly creeping up, I think Belgium are the team that have quietly got on with their business in a really ruthless way.
“If we can show everyone that we are capable of beating Belgium, I think that will be great for us confidence-wise to take us to the next level, where we want to be.”
Wise predicts containing Belgium’s Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne will be a key factor in England’s game plan, and says Southgate’s side must make the most of their chances.
“I think the difference is the end product,” he said.
“We had some chances in the first game where it fell to [Jesse] Lingard – he had opportunities.
“We just want them to fall to the right person. If it falls to Harry Kane then great.
“If we can stop Hazard and De Bruyne getting it, I think that will be very important for us as well.”