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Antwerp secures a place in the Champions’ Play-offs against defenseless red lantern KV Kortrijk

On the 29th matchday of the Jupiler Pro League, Antwerp completely secured its ticket for the Champions’ Play-offs. The Great Old was visiting a defenseless KV Kortrijk lord and master, but was only able to convert his dominance into one goal: 0-1.

Saturday, March 9, 2024 at 6:02 PM

Antwerp could barely miss the Champions’ Play-offs with 48 points, but had to do it in the Guldenspoorstadion without the injured Mandela Keita and Vincent Janssen. They were replaced in the starting line-up by Jurgen Ekkelenkamp and Jacob Ondrejka. Kortrijk, together with Eupen, did not even reach half of that point total (both 21 points) and were already sentenced to the play-downs. Freyr Alexandersson therefore chose Fossum and Alebiosu instead of Mehssatou and Afolabi.

The national champion immediately wanted to take the lead and almost took the lead after six minutes. An Antwerp corner stuck in the Kortrijk penalty area, after which Ilenikhena shot wide with his shin. After Antwerp’s attack waves had subsided, the VeeKaa came back into the match, but this did not produce any opportunities.

Antwerp had started attacking less prominently, but after a combination over several stations the score was deservedly 0-1. Via Ondrejka and Ejuke the ball reached Ilenikhena (31.), who shot into the roof of the goal.

In the second half the home team was allowed to play to their own spy head, but there was little noticeable difference. Antwerp handed out the sheets, Kortrijk stood there and watched. Toby Alderweireld headed yet another corner onto the crossbar, Ondrejka saw a second goal disallowed due to hand play.

With 51 points, Antwerp temporarily leapfrogs Club Brugge into third place, Kortrijk retains the red lantern. Later Saturday, two more matches are scheduled with Charleroi-Cercle Brugge (6:15 PM) and RWDM-Anderlecht (8:45 PM).

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