Club Brugge

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Champions League

Round Grp A (6)

2019-12-11 22:00:00 More Previews
First Division A
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Season Guide
2019/2020

Club Brugge

In


David Okereke (att), Spezia), Odilon Kossounou (def), Hammarby), Simon Deli (def), Slavia Prague), Amadou Sagna (att), Eduard Sobol (def), Shakhtar Donetsk - loan)

Out


Wesley (r)(att), Aston Villa), Stefano Denswil (r)(def), Bologna), Benoît Poulain (r)(def), Kayserispor), Saulo Decarli (sp)(def), Bochum), Guillaume Hubert (sp)(gk), Cercle Brugge - loan)

Club Brugge could not defend their title last season and eventually ended up second best in a tussle with a superb Genk side. It was hardly a bad season as a whole, with good progress made in Europe, but it was not enough to keep Ivan Leko in the job. The club moved in to bring back the coach of the title winners, Philippe Clement, who was a player with the Black and Blue and also an assistant to Michel Preud'homme a few years ago. It is a powerful move from Brugge and one that certainly makes them title favourites given the squad upheaval at Genk this summer as well. Brugge did lose some star players of their own but the losses of Wesley and Stefano Denswil do not feel that vital and irreparable to a squad that has some real talent and experience. In fact, keeping hold of the brilliant Hans Vanaken for now can count as the biggest transfer success of the club this summer. Nigerian David Okereke, who played in Serie B last season and attracted interest from the Premier League, is the main who is to take over the mantle from Wesley and should be the lead striker this season. He is of a similar physical build and it remains to be seen whether he could be as prolific. Simon Deli is a pretty impressive signing with good pedigree as well and should improve the team. Clement will need some time to get the players comfortable in his 4-3-3 system, after they have played a system with three at the back for the last two seasons, but it should not be much of an issue, and Brugge look geared up for a big push for the title this season.

Target


Brugge will be expecting the top spot given the summer they have had and it is hard to look beyond them.

Season Review
2018/2019

№2: Club Brugge

Club Brugge started the season as holders and favourites and initially looked very hard to beat, winning eight of the opening nine games, playing typical Ivan Leko football and looking every hungrier and determined. Yet, cracks began to appear in early autumn as the team went on a poor run of six away games without a win. That included some very poor results at Waasland-Beveren, Charleroi and Kortrijk, while results at home, where the Black and Blue are usually so reliable, proved wavering too. That, added to the fact that Genk set a superb early pace, suddenly meant that the champions were in real trouble and staring at a big cushion to the summit. They found a bit more consistency and purpose after the winter break and pulled off a few good wins in tight games but nevertheless ended the regular season some seven points off the leaders and facing a massive challenge to repeat their title triumph. Leko's men played some of their best football of the season early in the play-offs and definitely looked on their way to topping the team at the top but then got outplayed in the direct game away from home, losing 3:1, and never managed to close in again. At the end, a second place to a truly excellent Genk side is no disgrace but there is certainly some disappointment at lowering of the standards and Leko seems to be on his way out after just two years. Yet there is still an excellent squad there and in Hans Vanaken the team has a superb player that continues to produce and excel and has long outgrown the Belgian Jupiler League.


Player of the Season: Hans Vanaken

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