AA Gent played well over half an hour before half-time with excellent combination football, but in the zone of truth, the Buffalos never gave up. When Chakvetadze got red after an unfortunate tackle on Gerkens, HVH had to rearrange his team’s battle plan, but Gent didn’t really get into trouble. On the contrary. Substitute Tissoudali had three good opportunities to open the score shortly after the break, but left them unused. Antwerp did not give home for a long time, but thanks to a goal from the opportunistic Frey it still kept the three points at home.
Brian Priske opted for the trio of Bataille, Gerkens and Miyoshi three days after the home defeat against Frankfurt, which put Buta, Benson and Samatta on the bench. Compared to the European home match against the Cypriot Anorthosis Famagusta, Hein Vanhaezebrouck could not rely on Bezus (ankle) and Castro-Montes (quadriceps). On the other hand, Odjidja and Chakvetadze, just like De Sart, appeared again in the Ghent base eleven.
The Ghent fans provided Bengali fire just before kick-off, but on the field it was also immediately fireworks: Frey guided Miyoshi with a delicious chopper directly through the Ghent offside trap, but Hanche-Olsen saved his team with an impressive rush from an early deficit. Gent immediately knew what time it was and resolutely took control of the game. After a few still shy Ghent combinations smothered at an early stage, Samoise made a fine pass to Chakvetadze, but the little Georgian kicked Butez too softly.
Moments later, it was again all hands on deck in the Antwerp sixteen: Kums sent a magnificent ball into the back of the central duo Almeida – Dessoleil, but Depoitre did not get past an attentive Butez. The French goalkeeper of the Great Old saw more blue and white shirts storming at him in that phase of the first half than he would have liked, but when Odjidja played Depoitre again, the Ghent striker was unable to finish it again.
Chakvetadze exclusion throws a spanner in the works in Ghent
Antwerp could hardly do anything about it. There was hardly any danger of the home team’s goal before half-time, but when Chakvetadze unluckily started Gerkens, it was code red for the Buffalos. After all, at the insistence of the VAR, Boucaut looked carefully at the video images again and promptly turned red. A very stern blow for the Georgian. Yet Gent was not in the least upset and via Depoitre it even got two fine opportunities.
The home team also tried via Nainggolan but his deflected shot could not outwit Bolat. In the closing seconds of that first period, Bataille also escaped his second yellow card of the evening: the right back knocked Nurio to the ground in a Ghent outbreak, but despite fierce protest from the Buffalos, Boucaut saw no problem with it. The anger of the visitors was no less.
Substitute Tissoudali is immediately ubiquitous
At halftime, both coaches intervened. Priske brought Buta and Samatta in front of Bataille and Gerkens, while Vanhaezebrouck replaced the turntable Odjidja with Tissoudali, who immediately created a danger after just 15 seconds. Ngadeu sent a high ball and via Depoitre the leather ended up at Tissoudali who appeared like a devil from a box but decided in front.
Antwerp countered with a high cross from Buta, but the focus immediately had to return to the other side of the field where an unstoppable Tissoudali twice destroyed the local defense but the ex-Beerschotman failed to score and thus drove his coach and the traveler along. fans to despair.
Meanwhile, football at the Great Old was still very sloppy. Substitute Benson – Miyoshi was also taken aside by Priske before the hour – did not cause a shock effect in the least. Nevertheless, the pressure from Antwerp gradually increased and Fischer forced Bolat to make an excellent intervention on the advice of the excellent substitute Buta. Combined, however, it continued to cry with the cap on for the Sinjoren who suffered a lot of ball loss.
K Storage Frey kills brave Buffalos
In the meantime, a fresh and frisky Ghent remained upright and that caused a lot of nerves among the home supporters. but when Samatta was eventually found by Benson, it took an excellent parade from Bolat to keep a clean sheet. Priske also threw in Haroun for a very mediocre Nainggolan.
And then Dame Fortuna definitely chose the side of the home team. Nurio caused a free kick about 20 meters from the Ghent goal. Ex-Buffalo Verstraete took the shot and forced Bolat to a cat jump, but in the rebound the well-followed Frey trumped Ngadeu for once and so it was suddenly 1-0.
A hard verdict for the Buffalos. Vanhaezebrouck brought in three fresh forces, but they could not prevent AA Gent from running into its fifth competitive defeat despite a great performance. Lemajic still had a huge chance, but the Serb decided from close by incomprehensibly high. Antwerp will be the worst, after the European disappointment on Thursday it could not impress, but the three points just put it in the pocket. Mission accomplished.