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Club beats Union SG in Semis first leg

Croky Cup

The Belgian Cup Semis served up a clash between Club Brugge and Union SG, the first leg disputed at Jan Breydel. The solid step that would have been the 2-0 victory in minute 89, goals courtesy of Andreas Skov Olsen and Ferran Jutglà, was cut to just the one goal margin by the very end of the game as Koki Machida pulled back one for Union. The return at the Dudenpark is scheduled on Wednesday 28 February. 

Three personnel changes to the team that had suffered defeat at Antwerp over the weekend: the injured Maxim De Cuyper, Hugo Vetlesen and Philip Zinckernagel made way for Denis Odoi, Eder Balanta and Ferran Jutglà. The hosts took matters in hand straight from kick-off of the 40th official game this season, and were rewarded just ten minutes down the track. Club recovering the ball on its own half, finding Jutglà on the left hand side who produced a great wing change towards Skov Olsen who, true to form, pushed on towards the box, cutting inside to majestically fire it in in bottom left hand corner (1-0). The goal shook Union, and the visitors now started putting their foot next that of Club without creating real danger. An attentive Casper Nielsen blocked Noah Sadiki's effort, and Mohammed Amoura's header ended up in the eager hands of Simon Mignolet. The remainder of the first half proved rather uneventful, with the exception of a couple of bookings, and the two teams headed for the dressing rooms with a well-earned 1-0 advantage for Blue and Black.

The second half had hardly been kicked off when the home crowd celebrated another home goal. Skov Olsen carving his way through the Union defense, producing the perfect cross towards the far post where Jutglà neatly headed the 2-0 past goalkeeper Moris. That same Moris denied Union further damage as he saved a hard free kick by Skov Olsen. Club stayed in charge, but had better stayed attentive: a slight cock-up in defense by Odoi put Nilsson in possession, trying to find Amoura, but the latter could not get a touch to the ball. Union was seeing stars, and coach Blessin reacted with a triple substitution. Not to much avail, however: neat interplay between Skov Olsen and Odoi ended in a good cross towards Igor Thiago, duly pawed by Moris. Seconds later that same Odoi was torpedoed by Amoura, awarded a dark yellow. Protesting against such injustice, Skov Olsen also conceded a booking, ruling him out for the return game at Union.

Contrary to his colleague, Deila only made changes to his team later on in the game, bringing on Michal Skóraś, who immediately forced a corner kick, headed over by Brandon Mechele. Inching towards the end of the game, Union still proved unable to create much danger, and a logical 2-0 win seemed to be Club's reward, but as was the case in the last two Club games, a last gasp goal proved quite the blow: a scrimmage in front of goal ended up with Machida, firing it in from close range (2-1). A tight lead, but a lead nonetheless for Club as it will take on the second leg in three weeks time.

Belgian Cup - Semi Finals First Leg

: 20,095 - Jan Breydel Stadium
: Mr. Bram Van Driessche

Club Brugge : Simon Mignolet - Denis Odoi, Brandon Mechele, Jorne Spileers, Bjorn Meijer - Eder Balanta, Casper Nielsen, Hans Vanaken, Andreas Skov Olsen (82’ Michal Skoras), Ferran Jutgla (88’ Shion Homma) - Igor Thiago
Bench: Nordin Jackers, Nick Swinton, Victor Barbera, Dedryck Boyata, Kyriani Sabbe, Bi Kader Yameogo
Coach : Ronny Deila
Union St-Gilloise
: Anthony Moris, Kevin MacAllister, Loïc Lapoussin (’57 Casper Terho), Christian Burgess, Alessio Castro-Montes (54’ Koki Machida), Cameron Puertas, Charles Vanhoutte, Ross Sykes, Noah Sadiki (54’ Mathias Rasmussen), Gustaf Nilsson (Dennis Eckert), Mohammed Amoura
Bench: Heniz Lindner, Elton Kabangu, Nathan Huygevelde
Coach : Alexander Blessin
: Mechele, Lapoussin, Spileers, Amoura, Skov Olsen, Odoi, Burgess
ed: none

Goals : 10’ Skov Olsen (1-0), 46’ Jutgla (2-0), 92’ Machida (2-1)