Saturday, January 29, 2005
Standard Liege vs Cercle Brugge
Eerste Klasse - Saturday January 29, 2005
Stade Maurice Dufrasne
For the second time this weekend, an American's club dropped four goals on their opponent. Oguchi Onyewu's Standard Liège crushed Cercle Brugge to move past Racing Genk (depending on Sunday nights result) and into third place in Jupiler league standings.

Since surrendering seven goals in their disastrous showing versus Athletic Bilbao, Standard's defense seems to have found its rhythm conceding only one goal in their last five matches.

Wamberto, the former Ajax star, would lead the way for Standard, opening the scoring in the 15th minute and adding two more in the second half to secure his hattrick and take over the league lead with eleven goals on the season. Milan Rapaic would add the fourth goal.

Standard was already under attack in the first minute when Eric Deflandre lost the ball to Haral Meyssen. The former Standard player sent a through pass to Dieter Dekelver that Mathieu Assou-Ekkotto defended with a slikde tackle giving CS Bruges a first corner. Dekelver's ensuing corner would find jan Mansureel could only head it over the bar.

That seemed to be enough to wake up the Liègeois, and they went on to dominate the rest of the match.

Playing out of the back, Oguchi Onyewu sent a long precise ball to Wamberto that the Brasilian controlled, but his right foot volley only found the side of the net.

In the 9th, it was Wamberto causing trouble for the visitors when he dribbled Denis Viane and Jimy De Wulf, but his shot went just a few inches wide of the right post.

Standard's first goal would be the against the run of play with Conceicao leading the way. His centering pass found Geraerts whose header went off the cross bar and fell at a waiting Bangoura whose header would not miss.

Rapaic had a nice chance to double the score in the 26th when he received a pass with his chest from Wamberto and though his volley was well taken, the Croatian's attempt went few inches wide.

In the 38th, Wamberto was again dangerous taking a long cross from a Phillip Leonard . Brugge keeper Peter Mollez' superb reflexes were the only thing that prevented the score.

Mollez's skills were again tested just before the half when Onyewu Oguchi was denied a sure goal having come flying in over the defense to get a blistering header on goal off of a Milan Rapaic corner.

With the two teams heading into the locker rooms, Standard had shown to be the superior side and Bruge had to feel itself lucky to still be in the match down by only one goal.

Standard picked up where they left off, controlling the play from the kick off and in the 53rd, Wamberto, taking a pass from Conceicao turned and took a shot into a packed Cercle penalty area. The deflection fell to Milan Rapaic who finished it to bring the score to 2-0

Brugge thought they might have finally created an opportunity for themselves in the 60th minute when Meyssen found himself heading in alone on goal but the line referee had his flag raised, much to the dismay of Meyssen.

Standard added their third goal in the 70th when Conceicao passed to Bangoura who juked defender De Wulf and then fooled Mollez with another false move sending the keeper one way and his shot the other and Standard was cruising

Two minutes later, Conceicao won a penalty after being brought down in the box by Cercle's Jan Masureel. Conceicao took the spot kick himself only to see Mollez choose the correct side of the goal and deflect the ball out for corner.

Cercle's second and last occasion came from Meyssen in the 76th when he sent a drive at Vedran Runje who made his second save of the match.

In the 86th after Deflandre found an isolated Jonathan Walasiak in the middle, the young Belgian midfielder sent a powerful low shot that Mollez had a hard time to holding onto but managed to control.

Just thirty seconds later, again Walasiak was upfront again to strike another powerful attempt that went over the bar.

Bangoura's hattrick would be completed in the 89th minute when Mollez's lazy clearance went straight to Juan Ramon Curbelo. Curbelo found a streaking Bangoura who easily put it away.

"The good point is we've given up only one goal in the last 4 matches; it's everybody's contribution, not only the defense," Onyewu told YA after the game.

Standard travels to Brussels next weekend to take on the 17th place club for the 21st matchday.

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