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It was a wonderful journey

It’s difficult to measure desire, faith, and willingness. The dedication. Taison’s tears. A grateful Toumba crowd. PAOK were defeated 2-0 by Club Brugge and were eliminated from the UEFA Europa Conference League. Besides the disappointment though, the club clearly has the right to show its satisfaction for a wonderful, transcendent journey of 16 European games this season. It was quite a ride.

19.04.2024

The Double-headed Eagle players believed they could overturning the 1-0 deficit from the first leg. Just as much as the club’s exemplary supporters did. However, the case of qualifying against the Belgians seemed to be more in hope as the first half played out.

Despite the initial momentum generated by PAOK, the visitors quickly leveled the game, even coming out and looking more threatening on more than three occasions, as their counter-attacking speed caused problems. And in one such forward burst, in the 33rd minute, they found a way to open the scoring through Jutgla, who netted after Sabbe’s cross. They could have doubled their advantage sooner if Kotarski did not intervene and make a great save in the 41st minute. Unfortunately for PAOK, however, at the end of the first half, a VAR review ruled that Club Brugge’s second goal should stand, with Jutgla again the man target, ramming home from close range. That goal came for the Belgians right after a promoting attack for PAOK via Tasion, making it even harder to take.

With two changes at half-time ( Zivkovic for Murg and Samatta for Brandon ) the home side looked to push for goals. In the 51st minute, they came close to one via Despodov , but he failed to connect as well as he would have liked with Taison’s cross. Also, PAOK were close to winning a penalty in the 61st minute when Despodov fell under a challenge from a Brugge defender. However, again VAR was not in the hosts’ favor and showed that actually Despodov had been offside when he received the ball. Meite was also replaced by Ozdoev in the 55th minute.

Lucescu then also threw Konstantelias into the game in the 71st minute, in place of Despodov , and although PAOK moved the ball around well and largely had the initiative of the attacking phases, they did not become particularly threatening against a well-dilled Brugge defense. In the 68th minute they edged closer to a goal with a Schwab header, as well as the Austria’s shot in the 82nd minute, and even again in the 85th minute when Schwab was denied by the visiting goalkeeper. But a goal woiuld not come, and the home side had to accept defeat, but they also received a positive applause from the fans for the European adeventure, with domestic matters and the title race very much on.

Team lineups:

PAOK: Kotarski, Otto, Kedziora, Koulierakis, Baba, Meite (Ozdoev 56′), Schwab, Despodov (Konstantelias 71′), Murg (A.Zivkovic 46′), Taison, Brandon (Samatta 46′).

Club Brugge: Jackers, Sabbe, Ordonez, Balanta, Skoras, Meijer, Vetlesen (Zinkernagel 84′), Vanaken, Onyendika, Nusa (Ontoi 76′), Jutgla.

Relevant News

It was a wonderful journey

It’s difficult to measure desire, faith, and willingness. The dedication. Taison’s tears. A grateful Toumba crowd. PAOK were defeated 2-0 by Club Brugge and were eliminated from the UEFA Europa Conference League. Besides the disappointment though, the club clearly has the right to show its satisfaction for a wonderful, transcendent journey of 16 European games this season. It was quite a ride.

19.04.2024

The Double-headed Eagle players believed they could overturning the 1-0 deficit from the first leg. Just as much as the club’s exemplary supporters did. However, the case of qualifying against the Belgians seemed to be more in hope as the first half played out.

Despite the initial momentum generated by PAOK, the visitors quickly leveled the game, even coming out and looking more threatening on more than three occasions, as their counter-attacking speed caused problems. And in one such forward burst, in the 33rd minute, they found a way to open the scoring through Jutgla, who netted after Sabbe’s cross. They could have doubled their advantage sooner if Kotarski did not intervene and make a great save in the 41st minute. Unfortunately for PAOK, however, at the end of the first half, a VAR review ruled that Club Brugge’s second goal should stand, with Jutgla again the man target, ramming home from close range. That goal came for the Belgians right after a promoting attack for PAOK via Tasion, making it even harder to take.

With two changes at half-time ( Zivkovic for Murg and Samatta for Brandon ) the home side looked to push for goals. In the 51st minute, they came close to one via Despodov , but he failed to connect as well as he would have liked with Taison’s cross. Also, PAOK were close to winning a penalty in the 61st minute when Despodov fell under a challenge from a Brugge defender. However, again VAR was not in the hosts’ favor and showed that actually Despodov had been offside when he received the ball. Meite was also replaced by Ozdoev in the 55th minute.

Lucescu then also threw Konstantelias into the game in the 71st minute, in place of Despodov , and although PAOK moved the ball around well and largely had the initiative of the attacking phases, they did not become particularly threatening against a well-dilled Brugge defense. In the 68th minute they edged closer to a goal with a Schwab header, as well as the Austria’s shot in the 82nd minute, and even again in the 85th minute when Schwab was denied by the visiting goalkeeper. But a goal woiuld not come, and the home side had to accept defeat, but they also received a positive applause from the fans for the European adeventure, with domestic matters and the title race very much on.

Team lineups:

PAOK: Kotarski, Otto, Kedziora, Koulierakis, Baba, Meite (Ozdoev 56′), Schwab, Despodov (Konstantelias 71′), Murg (A.Zivkovic 46′), Taison, Brandon (Samatta 46′).

Club Brugge: Jackers, Sabbe, Ordonez, Balanta, Skoras, Meijer, Vetlesen (Zinkernagel 84′), Vanaken, Onyendika, Nusa (Ontoi 76′), Jutgla.

Relevant News

It was a wonderful journey

It’s difficult to measure desire, faith, and willingness. The dedication. Taison’s tears. A grateful Toumba crowd. PAOK were defeated 2-0 by Club Brugge and were eliminated from the UEFA Europa Conference League. Besides the disappointment though, the club clearly has the right to show its satisfaction for a wonderful, transcendent journey of 16 European games this season. It was quite a ride.

19.04.2024

The Double-headed Eagle players believed they could overturning the 1-0 deficit from the first leg. Just as much as the club’s exemplary supporters did. However, the case of qualifying against the Belgians seemed to be more in hope as the first half played out.

Despite the initial momentum generated by PAOK, the visitors quickly leveled the game, even coming out and looking more threatening on more than three occasions, as their counter-attacking speed caused problems. And in one such forward burst, in the 33rd minute, they found a way to open the scoring through Jutgla, who netted after Sabbe’s cross. They could have doubled their advantage sooner if Kotarski did not intervene and make a great save in the 41st minute. Unfortunately for PAOK, however, at the end of the first half, a VAR review ruled that Club Brugge’s second goal should stand, with Jutgla again the man target, ramming home from close range. That goal came for the Belgians right after a promoting attack for PAOK via Tasion, making it even harder to take.

With two changes at half-time ( Zivkovic for Murg and Samatta for Brandon ) the home side looked to push for goals. In the 51st minute, they came close to one via Despodov , but he failed to connect as well as he would have liked with Taison’s cross. Also, PAOK were close to winning a penalty in the 61st minute when Despodov fell under a challenge from a Brugge defender. However, again VAR was not in the hosts’ favor and showed that actually Despodov had been offside when he received the ball. Meite was also replaced by Ozdoev in the 55th minute.

Lucescu then also threw Konstantelias into the game in the 71st minute, in place of Despodov , and although PAOK moved the ball around well and largely had the initiative of the attacking phases, they did not become particularly threatening against a well-dilled Brugge defense. In the 68th minute they edged closer to a goal with a Schwab header, as well as the Austria’s shot in the 82nd minute, and even again in the 85th minute when Schwab was denied by the visiting goalkeeper. But a goal woiuld not come, and the home side had to accept defeat, but they also received a positive applause from the fans for the European adeventure, with domestic matters and the title race very much on.

Team lineups:

PAOK: Kotarski, Otto, Kedziora, Koulierakis, Baba, Meite (Ozdoev 56′), Schwab, Despodov (Konstantelias 71′), Murg (A.Zivkovic 46′), Taison, Brandon (Samatta 46′).

Club Brugge: Jackers, Sabbe, Ordonez, Balanta, Skoras, Meijer, Vetlesen (Zinkernagel 84′), Vanaken, Onyendika, Nusa (Ontoi 76′), Jutgla.