Belgian Recap: Durkin & McKenzie Taste Victory

Both Chris Durkin and Mark McKenzie were on the winning sides while Sam Vines and Owen Otasowie wait for their chance to shine in Pro League action.

Genk 3 – 0 Seraing

Mark McKenzie was back in the starting line-up as his Genk side made easy work of new boys Seraing in front of their home fans at the Cegeka Arena.  While the American played the entire game, it was his team mate Paul Onuachu who was the star of the night as he took the game ball home after his hat trick.

The Smurfs were celebrating after only 17 minutes when Joseph Paintsil danced around a few defenders as he entered the  box and smashed the ball just inside the far post.  VAR was asked to have a look and the goal was disallowed because the attacker from Ghana was offside when he received the pass on the left flank.

That really shouldn’t have mattered though because when Junya Ito latched onto a ball squared inside the box, Ibrihima Cissé demonstrated how not to make a tackle as he brought the man from Japan.  Onuachu put the ball on the spot but ended up giving the Seraing keeper, Guillaume Diestch a good chuckle as he blasted it oh so wide of the right post.

The big Nigerian redeemed himself 10 minutes later however as Ito set him up as he almost fluffed his lines again but managed to tap it in from inches off the goal line.  This was followed two minutes later by another one.  His first shot inside the box, after receiving the ball from a counter attack, was blocked by Diestch’s feet after the ball was kicked right at him.  Fortuitously, it came right back to last season’s Golden Boot and this time he tucked it away from about 15 yards.

The hat trick was completed four minutes after the intermission after Paintsil was brought down in the box.  The man with eight goals already this season made it nine from the spot, shooting right down the middle as Diestch jumped to his right.

Genk are keeping pace with the league leaders Club Brugge, behind by just a point after nine games.  They’ll hope to see the champions trip up this weekend and secure three more points themselves when they play Eupen over the weekend.  The team in German speaking Belgium are tied on points but just ahead of them in second place.  Before that one however, they’ll have to contend with a home game against Dinamo Zagreb in Europa League action.

Standard Liege 1 – 2 Sint-Truiden

Chris Durkin and Sint-Truiden crossed the Belgian linguistic border on Saturday night when they headed to Liege to take on Standard.  The American played the first 57 minutes as the Canaries shocked les Rouges in front of their home fans with the victory.

The first half was tightly contested, meaning that neither side looked very threatening.  It was at the 45 minute mark however when the hosts broke the deadlock with Nicolas Gavory giving them the lead going into the locker rooms for the intermission off a free kick. 

It only took eight minutes into the second half however for the game to draw level.  Durkin picked out his team mate Mory Konaté, who smashed it into the back of the Standard net.  Although they looked the likeliest to score of the two teams, STVV left it until th 89th minute when Christian Brüls crossed it to Rocco Reitz and the German made no mistake, thereby securing all the points for the visitors.

Now in eighth place in a crowded mid-table, the Canaries will look to move even higher up the standings when they welcome KV Oostende to the Stayen over the weekend.  The Seasiders are on the same 13 points but a place above their weekend hosts due to a superior goal difference.


Sam Vines didn’t make the bench when Royal Antwerp travelled to take on Union St Gilloise and came away with a 2-1 victory.  Up next is a midweek visit from Tim Chandler and Frankfurt in Europa League action before welcoming KAA Gent to the Bosuil Stadium as they return to Pro League action over the weekend.

Owen Otasowie did not take part as Club Brugge slipped up at home against cellar dwellers OH Leuven who picked up a valuable point in their fight to avoid relegation in this game that ended 1-1 on Friday night.  Next up for Club is a midweek trip to Germany to take on Jesse Marsch’s RB Leipzig before coming home for the big derby at Anderlecht.

Joe Efford played 69 minutes and Jacob Montes came off the bench to play 11 but Waasland-Beveren fell on the road to Lierse by a 2-1 score line.  The defeat leaves them in fifth place in this league of only eight teams.  They’ll go up against Oguchi Onyewu’s Excelsior Virton this weekend at home. 

Maki Tall was an unused substitute on Sunday afternoon when his Francs Borains team came away with a 1-0 victory against Dessel Sport in D3 action to remain the only team that hasn’t dropped points.  They’ll travel over the weekend to take on Mandel United in hopes of keeping their perfect record.

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