From Qatar to the Croky Cup, four of Club’s basic players had to make adjustments on Wednesday evening. Noa Lang even put on gloves for his first match since the one against Messi. It was thanks to the Dutchman that Club was able to get back into the rhythm through the cup – Lang saved the blue and black a month and a half ago with two goals before the elimination on that miserable evening for Club in Maasmechelen. It was one of those many mediocre matches since the last time STVV came to visit – on October 19, the team from Bruges won convincingly 3-0.
However, Club started the second part of the season sharply. To the new look of Carl Hoefkens. The hair short, the beard neatly trimmed. Jutglà lashed out viciously, Sylla almost surprised Mignolet with a left back pass. The highlight followed in minute 17. Jutglà launched Lang with a good deviation, on the way to Schmidt the Dutchman outplayed Janssens as if he wasn’t there. Sometimes you just know when an attacker – depending on his form and mood – will score. And Noah did. 1-0 for Club, for whom everything went according to plan. With Vanaken playing all in one time, Mata being Mata again and also Sylla and Onyedika standing out.
Lang takes care of the opening goal
However, the pace slowed down around half an hour. Just when we were wondering how STVV would ever score a goal here, disaster struck for Club. Mignolet lingered too long and hit the ball right into Brüls, resulting in the worst possible outcome. Despite a promising opening half hour, Club again went in with a bad feeling.
Mignolet blunders, STVV on the same level
In the image of the entire season, Blauw-zwart had to go full steam ahead. It never seems to go by itself in this campaign, and that would also be the case against STVV again. Lang had meanwhile remained in the dressing room with a load, Skov Olsen took his place. Just when Club got back on track around the hour, Jan Breydel’s jaws fell open a second time. Vanaken slipped in his own half, STVV took off with the three of them. The team from Truien played it incredibly badly, but Bruno still went towards goal from the left. The ball deviated on Mata’s leg and fell straight into the closest top corner, well beyond Mignolet’s reach. Another clumsy goal against for Club, but with a lot of bad luck involved.
Brüls and Hayashi take care of the 1-2 and 1-3
At the start of the last quarter of the game, Jan Breydel was all nervous. Being eliminated by STVV in-house, it wouldn’t be right? Not long after the 1-2, the consternation was possibly even greater. STVV doubled their lead with a sharp counter. Hayashi drove Olympia to despair, the fans cursed wildly. Substitute Larin even got a flute concert over him. And it got even worse. STVV made it 1-4 in the absolute final phase – the defeat complete for blue-black. ‘Shame on you’ the audience chanted. The olés even rolled off the stands when STVV had possession.
Bruno takes care of the 1-4 penalty
Despite a strong opening half hour, Club Brugge started part 2 of this season in the worst possible way. The negative line was simply continued, in the meantime the cup campaign is in the dustbin much earlier than expected. The pre-break dip has suddenly turned into a crisis. Because despite that five-week break, those involved have not forgotten what happened before that winter break. Just like on matchday four, blue-black and Carl Hoefkens must absolutely beat OHL on Monday. Even if it’s just to temporarily restore peace.
Mignolet honest about blunder: “I should never make that mistake”
Simon Mignolet was clearly disappointed after the heavy 1-4 defeat. “We are very disappointed that we are out of the cup. We start the game well and we are deservedly 1-0 ahead, but then I make a personal mistake that should never happen. In the opening phase of the second period we are again the better team, but suddenly they score a ‘lucky goal’ and then you end up in a situation where you fear the elimination. Just then we can’t let the cups hang and that happened today. The goal was to keep going and that didn’t work out. I understand the frustrations of the supporters, because they would have loved to travel to Heysel just like us. They don’t like to see their team lose and certainly not like this. There is also frustration in the dressing room, because the cup is still the shortest way to European football. The next match (a home match against OH Leuven, ed.) we have to straighten our backs. Today we shot ourselves in the foot and we have to avoid that.”