Antwerp and non-national champion Club Brugge wins the Cup of Belgium. Lior Refaleov (ex-Club) made the only goal in the final. For Antwerp it is the first cup since 1992, which is also good for a ticket to the group stage of the Europa League.
The cup final in a nutshell
- Key moment: Ivan Leko did not count on Didier Lamkel Zé during the preparation, but did bring him to the kick-off of the cup final. A good “gamble”: the Cameroonian left his mark before the break.
- Man of the match: If you score the only goal in a cup final, you will also receive this title. Lior Refaelov remained calm and necked his ex-club.
- Remarkable: All previews are allowed in the trash. Club Brugge was the winner on paper, but not on the field.
Antwerp conquers the Belgian Cup after Refaelov’s goal:
Antwerp starts fresh, Club unrecognizable
Club Brugge a huge favorite? “An understatement”, Antwerp said beforehand, which not only saw 9 players leave, but was also not allowed to draft its acquisitions. Ivan Leko then conjured Didier Lamkel Zé – who nevertheless missed all the preparation matches – out of his hat.
The negative predictions did not bother Antwerp. The red shirts started fresh in the final, while 146 days without an official match had sprinkled some sand in Club’s champion machine.
Blauw-zwart opened with sterile pressure, but the chances were for Antwerp. Mbokani opened the volley with a tight shot at Mignolet, Hongla and Juklerod also tested the reflexes of the Red Devil within the opening quarter.
Fourth time, good time then? In Antwerp they adjust the proverb after the cup final, because after half an hour it was still hit. Lamkel Zé launched Juklerod, who offered Refaelov the opening goal on a tray: 0-1, also the halftime score.
Lamkel She has to recover outside the lines, but then rolls smoothly inside the lines
Club Brugge cannot get tired of Antwerp
Philippe Clement had had 45 minutes to write a strong sermon for half time. And that had an effect: a skinny Club Brugge came out of the dressing rooms piqued and put the pressure on.
With Youssouphe Badji, the strongman during the preparation, as a substitute at the forefront, Club Brugge seemed ready to turn the tables. Antwerp was pushed off the stage for fifteen minutes.
But the national champion’s attack attempts remained uninspired. Golden Shoe Hans Vanaken could not crank up his team, only 18-year-old Badji could threaten with two solid headers.
Antwerp seemed to have put all its energy into the first half, but it was not yet a bird for the invisible blue-and-black cat. Even 6 minutes of extra time was not enough for Club Brugge to drag extensions from the fire. No third double in the club history of Bruges, but a first prize in 28 years for Antwerp, which can go to the group stage of the Europa League.
Haroun can put the cup in the air
Leko: “Too bad supporters should miss this”
Ivan Leko had a fantastic return to the Belgian fields after a season absence. The Croatian pushed Antwerp to a first cup victory in 28 years, even against his former employer Club Brugge.
“The boys have executed the plan perfectly. I am very satisfied. I am the coach today, but Laszlö Bölöni and some of the departed players from last year played a very big role in this success,” said Leko afterwards.
“Friday I said I wanted to win, but we played against the best team in Belgium. The chances were not that great, but they are always there in football. I am very proud of my team. This club has grown every year It is a great pity that our supporters have to miss this historic moment. ”
I had fantastic years in Bruges. I don’t consider this a revenge at all.
“The victory was absolutely deserved. We can discuss the way of playing, but I am very satisfied. It was an advantage for me that I worked at Club Brugge. I had fantastic years in Bruges. I do not consider this at all revenge. ”
7 “Last year they continued on this road under Philippe Clement, with excellent football. But we also have a lot of quality in our team. Didier Lamkel Zé is also part of that team. With him we increase our quality. I told him that he could join the team if he wanted. If he didn’t want to, he could go home. He wanted to stay and that’s good for us. ”
“The title? We’re not ready for that”, Leko says, keeping the pressure off. “Not yet. But I dream big. I expect an even stronger team in two months. The sporting cell will take care of that.”
Clement: “Hopefully this will be a wake-up call for my players”
- Philippe Clement (coach Club Brugge): “In the 1st half we were non-existent and Antwerp ended up in the lead. They won the cup there. My team was not good in the 1st half. During the half time I was very angry.””Our reaction was good in the 2nd half. We had chances to equalize. Congratulations to Antwerp, I have already congratulated Ivan Leko.”
“It is a pity that we miss the double, that is not often. A year after a title is always dangerous. In the head you see a few percent less sharpness. I hope this is a clear wake-up call for my players . “
- Simon Mignolet (goalkeeper Club Brugge): “If we had played the 1st half like the 2nd half, we would always have won. We have made things difficult for ourselves and so we lose a match that we should actually win.””Antwerp has fought hard and used everything to win. That is their right. We really wanted to win and take the double, but we did not reach our goal.”
“The fact that there were no supporters had little influence for me personally. It is of course more fun with fans, but we have to accept this situation. For me it is no different playing football without an audience. We are professionals and focused on what happens on the field . “
Leko: “Everyone said we had no chance”
Gheysens: “Antwerp can use this today”
Clement: “The first half we were nonexistent”
Refaelov: “We were all warriors today”
Mignolet: “If we play the first half like the second half, we always win”
Haroun: “The trainer’s plan was very good”