Simon Mignolet watched with sadness as six of his Liverpool teammates suffered quick-fire elimination from the World Cup with England.

A punishing double from Luis Suarez pushed the Three Lions towards an early knockout on Thursday and their fate was confirmed the following day when Costa Rica beat Italy.

Although he has spent both ties on the bench so far, Belgium's participation has been the total opposite, with successive victories booking a berth in the last 16.

Amid reflections on Sunday's narrow 1-0 win over Russia, the goalkeeper admitted that he felt for the half-a-dozen Reds representing England.

Mignolet said: "I felt sorry for the boys, because they've got a really good team and I was hoping that England could go on longer in the World Cup.

"But they were in a very tough group with a lot of competition - Italy, Uruguay and Costa Rica as well. It wasn't easy for them. Hopefully they'll recover from that."

For his own country, the tournament in Brazil has so far proved an enjoyable pursuit, with the outside contenders safely navigating a path into the knockout rounds.

"Everybody is pleased that we're in the next round," he added. "That's the most important thing. Hopefully we can finish first in the group.

"You never want to relax. For the last game, finishing top will be very important to see who we will come up against in the next round.

"We have to make sure we finish first as it gives us the best chance to go further in the tournament. In the World Cup, every single team is very difficult to beat and is there on merit. It's very tough."