Club open the new campaign with a 5-2 win over Eupen
Club Brugge have started the season with a solid 5-2 win against Eupen. The Blues were already comfortably leading at the break thanks to a Wesley brace and a goal by Vossen. The latter completed his hat-trick in the second half.
One week after the Super Cup victory against Standard, Club hosted Eupen for the first fixture of the new season. Ivan Leko made two changes to his line-up compared to last week's match. Benoît Poulain replaced Decarli in defence and Ivan Tomečak played as right wing-back with Diatta out injured.
The Croate was immediately involved in Club's opening goal. After a brilliant pass from Danjuma, playing on the left-hand side, Tomečak's first-touch pass in front of goal was ideal for Vossen, but he slammed it against goalkeeper Van Crombrugge. Luckily Wesley was closeby to fire in and open his account of this new season after just six minutes.
An ideal scenario for Club, leading so early in the game, and the hosts tried to double the lead quickly. Vossen tried to lob Van Crombrugge and the visiting goalkeeper did well to tip away Vanaken's header under the crossbar. Vormer volleyed the ball against Vossen, Rits saw his effort fly over and Luis Garcia almost beat his own goalkeeper when trying to clear Vanaken's cross.
Eupen barely had a chance in the opening minutes, apart from Pollet who dragged his finish wide.
The Blues were firmly in control of the match and decided the encounter halfway the first half. Blondelle hit Poulain in the face inside the box and after consulting with the VAR referee Verboomen awarded Club a penalty. Jelle Vossen didn't hesitate to slam in his first of the season. One minute later Club scored a third goal. Vanaken clipped the ball over the defenders and freed Wesley in front of goal. The Brazilian lifted the ball over Van Crombrugge and tapped in his second of the afternoon. The tempo dropped after that third goal, but Eupen weren't able to put up much of a fight. The only chance was for Yagan, but he deviated a cross wide of the far post.
The second half started off with an early chance for both sides. The subbed on Lazare tried to pull one back for the visitors, but Letica was equal to his shot. Club were more fortunate as the first chance in the second half resulted in a fourth goal. Danjuma feeded Vossen from the back line and the No. 9 slammed in from closeby. The forward almost looked like scoring a third goal, but he deviated Poulain's cross just over the crossbar. In between Vossen's goal and effort, Letica was forced into making a good save by Pollet.
Club in the driving seat to a comfortable victory and with chances to score a fifth. Wesley played Vossen through on goal, but he failed to round Van Crombrugge and saw his rebound denied as well. A few minutes later Wesley missed a tap-in from close range. Club would almost rue those misses because Eupen managed to half the deficit in a matter of minutes. Ocansey found the back of the net with a great touch on Schauerte's cross and Luis Garcia rolled the ball past a stretched Letica from the spot when Mitrović had brought down Ocansey inside the box.
The two goals meant a confidence boost for the Pandas but Club defended well and even increased the lead when Mulumba foulded Poulain on a corner kick and was sent off with a second yellow. Vossen stepped up for the penalty and fired in via the inside of the post to complete his hat-trick.
Jupiler Pro League – Fixture 1
Attendance: 27.000 – Jan Breydelstadion
Referee: Nathan Verboomen
Club Brugge: Karlo Letica – Benoît Poulain, Matej Mitrović, Stefano Denswil (34’ Saulo Decarli) – Ivan Tomečak, Ruud Vormer, Mats Rits (56’ Brandon Baiye), Hans Vanaken (74’ Siebe Schrijvers), Arnaut Danjuma – Jelle Vossen, Wesley Moraes. Bench: Ethan Horvath, Alexander Scholz, Luan Peres, Dion Cools, Emmanuel Dennis en Loïs Openda. Coach: Ivan Leko.
KAS Eupen: Hendrik Van Crombrugge – Julian Schauerte, Xavi Molina, Siebe Blondelle (46’ Jean Thierry Lazare), Cheick Keita - Eric Ocansey, Mégan Laurent, Remi Mulumba, Luis Garcia, Yvan Yagan (55’ Yuta Toyokawa) - David Pollet (65’ Florian Raspentino). Coach: Claude Makélélé.
Yellow cards: Blondelle, Molina.
Red cards: 88’ Mulumba (2x yellow)
Goals: 6’ Wesley (1-0), 24’ Vossen (penalty, 2-0), 25’ Wesley (3-0), 53’ Vossen (4-0), 69’ Ocansey (4-1), 73’ Luis Garcia (penalty, 4-2), 89’ Vossen (penalty, 5-2).
Report - Steven Floin