Onwards and upwards for Cercle

The last two matches of the weekend in Belgian football’s First Division saw mixed fortunes for Bruges’ two top flight teams. An injury time goal saw Cercle Brugge claim victory at home against the league-leaders Sporting Anderlecht. Later in the evening, Club Brugge was beaten 2-1 away at Standard de Liège.

An injury time goal by their Portuguese strike Rudy was enough to give Cercle Brugge victory in their game against the league leaders Sporting Anderlecht. This in turn was Anderlecht’s first defeat in the league since they lost 2-1 away against Oud-Heverlee Leuven on the opening day of the season.

The home side started best and Igor Vetokele soon put the visitors under pressure. However, slowly but surely Anderlecht got back into the game and a Kljestan's free-kick challenged the Cercle defence.

Cercle defended well and came close to scoring when D'Haene was all alone in front of Silvio Proto’s goal.

Anderlecht went down to ten men on the half hour when Milan Jovanovic was given his marching orders for lashing out.

Cercle then took command with Vetokele posing a constant threat up front. The second half saw Cercle go full out for the three points.

D’Haene’s effort produced an excellent save by Proto. Despite Cercle’s dominance, neither Renato, Neto nor Vetokele were able to score.

Meanwhile, Anderlecht could do nothing more than defend and hope for the best.

Just when everyone had resigned themselves to a goalless draw, Rudy (photo) put the ball into the back of the net to make for a final score of 1-0 to Cercle.

Cercle Brugge moves up to third place (level on points with second-placed AA Gent) and has 26 points from 13 games. Sporting Anderlecht remains top with 29 points.

Standard sees off Club Brugge

Standard got off to a furious start but missed that all important final touch in front of goal. Kanu missed a golden opportunity to score on 2 minutes, while Seijas’ effort hit the post a couple of minutes later.

Meanwhile, Vleminckx created a couple of chances for Club Brugge. Standard opened the scoring on 37 minutes through Tchité.

In the second half, Tchité was able to make the most of a bad pass by Club Brugge’s Van Gijseghem to make it 2-0 to Standard on 57 minutes.

Club Brugge weren’t going down without a fight though and a Vleminckx header produced some good goalkeeper from Bolat.

Club were given fresh hope when Dirar pulled one back on 76 minutes. In an exciting climax to the game, both teams came close to scoring.

However, it was not to be and the score remained 2-1 to Standard. Standard de Liège is now 5th with 22 points from 13 games. Club Brugge is 4th with 22 points.