Even before a ball was kicked in Cyprus, Ghent was already certain of the group win. Flora Tallin took care of that with her own hands. The Estonians surprisingly won 1-0 against Partizan Belgrade, the number 2 in the standings. Because the mutual result is in favor of AA Gent (2-1 over two matches), the first place in the group is fixed.
So it’s a luxury position. Vanhaezebrouck was able to let some strong players such as Odjidja, Tissoudali and Depoitre rest. Cums was sick. It didn’t help the combination game with the “Buffalo’s”.
In the early stages we had to make do with a shot from Bruno, just wide. The passing was too sloppy to really create chances.
The match actually didn’t deserve a goal, but it came literally and figuratively out of the blue. Christodoulopoulos saw that Bolat was far from his goal and scored just over the halfway line. A great goal.
Gent then had to answer and it did just before half time. After a free kick, the ball ended up at Ngadeu who saw his shot deflected from the line.
Also in the 2nd half, Ghent simply didn’t bring enough. Bruno fired another shot, but saw his effort fly into a corner through Tzur’s fingertips.
Vanhaezebrouck had seen enough and made no less than 4 substitutions after just an hour of football. Odjidja, Tissoudali and Depoitre had to do it.
However, it was no use anymore. Hanche-Olsen was still close to the equalizer, but he could only put his toe against the ball. Gent loses for the first time in the Conference League. It is a defeat without consequences, because the “Buffalo’s” are already sure of European wintering.