This weekend along with next could have blown the race for the title wide open. I say this because Anderlecht’s congestion of fixtures may have caught up with them. What with playing weekend-midweek 3 weeks in a row, could it slow them down hoping that the chasing pack could catch up?
Well…going by last week, nobody was interested in taking advantage with points shared at the top. Onto this week…again, nobody wants to slow Les Mauves down. Sunday saw the boys from Brussels travel out west to Oostende where 1 goal would seal the deal. Sofiane Hanni-Youri Tielemans combination proved key early in the second half to wrap up the win, with the Algerian finding the target. Anderlecht look unstoppable and without resting players, maybe they feel a title win is what’s needed more than continental success, not to say they won’t progress this Thursday!
Today was the turn of their nearest competitors in the regular season as Zulte Waregem welcomed current champions Club Brugge. The hosts looked fantastic in the early exchanges and through a penalty, who else but Mbaye Leye scored. They then doubled their lead as free scoring full back Henrik Dalsgaard doubled the lead! Without being too disrespectful, Brugge just haven’t kicked on and maybe their defeat to Genk weeks ago has slowed them down as they just haven’t recovered. However, the fight back was on as Hans Vanaken pulled a goal back just 6 minutes later, a lifeline going into the second half.
Going into the second half, Wesley, who has proven his selection every week so far levelled the match with 35 minutes still to play. Michel Preud’homme rang the changes throughout the half, desperate to claw back a magnificent turnaround, but the wasn’t to be. Two a piece is how it finished meaning both lose ground on the hunt if they had any aspirations of winning the title.
The last match of this Easter weekend was between Charleroi and Gent. I said a couple of weeks ago I really believed De Buffalo’s were Anderlecht’s closest contenders, and they showed that with brilliant January signing Yuya Kubo midway through the first period. The second half seemed a half of not many chances as the game edged closer to the 90 minute mark which suited Gent perfectly, hoping that a win would aid their hopes of maybe a Champions League qualifier, with this current momentum. In the end, 1-0 was good enough as Gent go into second and Anderlecht are the big winners again!
Lastly, Standard have parted company with Jankovic. A very mediocre season has continued into the play offs and with 1 win in 15, there’s no surprise he has unfortunately gone. With Mechelen next, I’m not sure if their form will change…?