Thursday 27 January 2022 22:45

No goals divide Club and Union in top-of-the-league clash

A goalless draw was all that was in it for Club Brugge as it faced league leaders Union in a head-to-head encounter at Jan Breydel Stadium. Blue & Black tried its luck a couple of times, but Union also proved just why it is the runaway leaders at this point in the competition. The draw leaves the gap between the two teams at nine units.

Jack Hendry's suspension forced Alfred Schreuder to reshuffle his Starting XI, bringing on Matej Mitrović, alongside Brandon Mechele in a three man defense, and with Eduard Sobol on the left wing. No room for Mats Rits either, who saw that Noa Lang started in the centre of midfield together with Charles De Ketelaere in support of deep forward Dost.

Matej Mitrović verscheen aan de aftrap
Matej Mitrović verscheen aan de aftrap

The home side was eager to it still has its say in the title race, and started with attacking intentions, resulting in a first opportunity after just fifteen seconds, Mata's cross deviated by Dost wide of goal. A bit later, attempts by Mitrović and Sobol were bllocked, while Mignolet was called upon a first time to deny Undav's shot. Twenty minutes into the game, an industrious Mitrović saw his effort end up on the top of the goal, and Vanzier could not get a good shot on target. That same Vanzeir had another fine chance halfway through the first half, coming eye-to-eye with Mignolet inside the box, but denied by the latter through a great foot reflex.

Simon Mignolet hield Club een paar keer overeind
Simon Mignolet hield Club een paar keer overeind

Union now really started showing just why it's top of the league, and kept a tight grip on Club's organisation, not without asking the Club defense some thorough questions either. A curling corner kick was tapped away from under the crossbar by Mignolet, and the goalie produced another thrilling save to deny Teuma, trying his luck from just outside the box. Another Teuma effort and Lapoussin shooting for goal both went missing. Club gasped for air, but had one more fine chance as Vanaken urged a speedy transition, ending up in a hard cross by Mata towards Dost, well-interpreted by the visiting goalie.

With Éder Balanta on for Noa Lang, Club tried to get a firmer grip on midfield in the second half. The first threat was for Club, but after a great combination through the centre, De Ketelaere was unable to reach Dost. Union, hardly taken aback, reacted through Nieuwkoop, pushing forward on the right wing and reaching Lazare, who couldn't make the most of the pull-back.

With a half hour to go, Blue and Black started mounting the pressure. Dost saw his shot blocked after some fine preparatory work by De Ketelaere, and in the ensuing corner kick, Vanaken headed just wide of target. Charles De Ketelaere saw his time come, bringing some fine actions to the table: he first saw his shot saved by Moris, and was unable to reach Dost a bit later. Union also had its chances, with Kandouss prolonging a free kick above target, and Mechele beating Vanzeir to the ball in a quick break.

Charles De Ketelaere speelde een sterke tweede helft
Charles De Ketelaere speelde een sterke tweede helft

An excruciating end of the game followed, as Schreuder brought on Rits and Sowah, but Union also kept looking for that goal surely worthy now of three points. Undav saw his deflected shot go into corner kick, and Teuma fired above target. The final opportunity, and a fine one it was, came to Vanaken, trying his luck from free kick some distance from the box, but a deflection made the ball go into corner kick, and the result remain as it was when it all started. The draw keeps Club a  serious distance from Union, still nine points clear of the reigning champions.

 

Jupiler Pro League – Match Day 24
Audience:
none – Jan Breydel Stadium
Ref: Mr. Lawrence Visser
Club Brugge: Simon Mignolet – Matej Mitrović (83’ Kamal Sowah), Brandon Mechele, Stanley Nsoki – Clinton Mata, Ruud Vormer (83’ Mats Rits), Hans Vanaken, Eduard Sobol – Charles De Ketelaere, Noa Lang (46’ Éder Balanta) – Bas Dost. Bank: Senne Lammens, Federico Ricca, Antonio Nusa, Lynnt Audoor and Cisse Sandra. Coach: Alfred Schreuder.
Union Sint-Gillis: Anthony Moris – Ismaël Kandouss, Christian Burgess, Siebe Van der Heyden – Bart Nieuwkoop, Casper Nielsen, Teddy Teuma, Lazare Amani (70’ Cameron Puertas), Loïc Lapoussin – Deniz Undav, Dante Vanzeir. Coach: Felice Mazzu.
Yellow: Lazare, Mata, Van der Heyden, Puertas, Lapoussin.
Red: none
Goals: none

Text by: Steven Floin (sv)

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