Adnan Januzaj's fine finish early in the second half has given Belgium a 1-0 victory over England to secure top spot in Group G at the World Cup.
The result means Belgium, who won all three of their group games to finish on nine points, will face Japan in the last 16 while England, who came second with six, take on Colombia.
That gives Gareth Southgate's England side a tougher test in the second round but should they get past that they will find themselves on a much more promising path to the final.
Belgium's side of the draw includes Argentina, Brazil, Portugal and France, while England's opponents are, on paper, easier and they face less travelling should they progress.
"We want to win football matches, so we're not happy to come away from here having been beaten. But what that means for the next round, we don't really know," said Southgate.
"The knockout game is the biggest game for a decade, so we had to make sure our key players were preserved," he added, having rested captain Harry Kane.
Belgium coach Roberto Martinez suggested he was not worried about the impact of the result on his team's possible future opponents.
"The victory is a consequence of a very good performance. You cannot plan the ideal scenario, you've seen big nations already eliminated," said the Spaniard.
"We need to look at ourselves, we are a stronger group than we were before the game. We're facing Japan, we've got to be ready for it," he said.
When Belgium and England play in the last 16 their lineups will bear little resemblance to those fielded on Thursday.
As expected both managers rested many players, a decision Southgate described as a 'no brainer' in the circumstances.
Belgium created the better openings in a poor first half, until former Manchester United midfielder Januzaj broke the deadlock with a superb curling effort in the 51st minute.
England then pushed on looking for an equaliser but they lacked a cutting edge. Striker Marcus Rashford had the best chance but his shot was wide of the target.