Club starts Champions League campaign with stunt victory

Club Brugge kicked off this Champions League campaign with a brilliant 1-2 win against Zenit Saint Petersburg. The blue and black played with lots of confidence and took a deserved lead through Dennis on the hour mark, but the hosts equalised when Lovren's long-range screamer hit the post and went in via the back of Horvath. But in the dying seconds of the match, Charles De Ketelaere tapped in from close range to give Club the win!

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Due to the positive COVID-19 tests of Mignolet, Kossounou and Krmenčík, and the suspension of Deli, coach Philippe Clement had to tinker with his line-up. Ethan Horvath replaced Mignolet between the sticks, while Federico Ricca played in the three-man defence instead of Deli. Diatta and Sobol played on the wings of Clement's 3-5-2 formation. In front Charles De Ketelaere played alongside Emmanuel Dennis.

Mats Rits se mete entre dos jugadores del Zenit
Mats Rits se mete entre dos jugadores del Zenit

Right from the start Club showed it had not flown in to just be an onlooker. Club were lively and didn't give Zenit the chance to dominate the game. The match had more yellow cards than chances. Mata, Dennis and Rits were booked by the French referee Bastien. Zenit could have been dangerous on a fast break, but Mechele dismantled the danger with a last-ditch tackle.

Dennis adelantó al Brujas
Dennis adelantó al Brujas
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Half an hour into the game, the blue and black created the first real chance. Dennis powered through around the edge of the box, but he couldn't find De Ketelaere with his pass. Five minutes before the half-time whistle Club had the best chance so far. Vormer picked out Vanaken with a brilliant cross, but Kerzhakov tipped over Vanaken's firm header. Shortly after Diatta's volley sailed wide and Vanaken fired a long-range effort over and wide of the top corner.

Apart from a tame header by Lovren, Zenit had little to show for themselves.

The home side were best out of the starting blocks in the second half. Driussi scuffed his finish just wide of the post and Ricca needed a brilliant tackle to deny Azmoun. A few minutes later the same Azmoun headed a corner kick wide of the target. Club Brugge had been defending most of the time until the hour mark: De Ketelaere was thwarted twice in front of goal, but when the loose ball fell into the path of Dennis he buried it!

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Zenit tried to set things straight right away, but lacked some efficiency. Karavaev fired it far wide from close range, Kuzyaev couldn't feed Dzyuba in front of goal and Driussi skied his finish. Fifteen minutes before the end the hosts leveled. Lovren sent a sensational long-range strike against Horvath's left-hand post, and the American diverted the rebound into his own net. Unlucky.

Charles De Ketelaere marcó el gol de la victoria en el descuento
Charles De Ketelaere marcó el gol de la victoria en el descuento

Now the game could have gone either way, with chances for both sides. Dennis couldn't take advantage when Zenit failed to clear the ball and De Ketelaere just couldn't get the ball into the feet of the subbed on Badji. On the other side of the pitch Horvath was called upon twice to deny Dzyuba and Wendel.

When both teams had found peace with a share of the spoils, a brilliant attacking move from Club sealed the deal. Vormer's low cross only needed a tap from De Ketelaere to bag all three points!

 

 

Champions League – Groep F: fixture 1

Attendance: 16.682 – Gazprom Arena

Referee: Benoît Bastien (Fre)

Zenit Saint Petersburg: Mikhail Kerzhakov – Vyacheslav Karavaev, Dejan Lovren, Yaroslav Rakytskyi, Danil Krugovoy – Daler Kuzyaev (72’ Wendel), Wilmar Barrios, Magomed Ozdoev (88’ Aleksandr Erokhin), Sebastian Driussi (72’ Andrey Mostovoy) – Sardar Azmoun, Artem Dzyuba. Coach: Sergei Semak.

Club Brugge: Ethan Horvath – Clinton Mata, Brandon Mechele, Federico Ricca – Krépin Diatta (78’ Noa Lang), Ruud Vormer, Mats Rits, Hans Vanaken, Eduard Sobol – Emmanuel Dennis (82’ Youssouph Badji), Charles De Ketelaere. Bank: Nick Shinton, Senne Lammens, Ignace Van der Brempt, Maxim De Cuyper, Éder Balanta, Thomas Van den Keybus, David Okereke, Siebe Schrijvers en Nathan Fuakala. Coach: Philippe Clement.

Yellow cards: Mata, Dennis, Rits, Lovren, Vanaken.

Red cards: none

Goals: 63’ Dennis (0-1), 74’ Horvath (owngoal, 1-1), 94' De Ketelaere (1-2).

 

Report - Steven Floin

Zenit-Club 20-10-2020

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