Jupiler Pro League Week 24: Predictions

Week 24
Friday
Standard Liège 2 – 0 Kortrijk
Saturday
Lokeren 18:00 Anderlecht
Beerschot 20:00 Mons
Waasland-Beveren 20:00 OH Leuven
KV Mechelen 20:00 Racing Genk
Zulte Waregem 20:00 Lierse
Charleroi P – P Cercle Brugge
Sunday
Club Brugge 14:30 KAA Gent

All the games are going ahead tonight as planned with the exception of Charleroi – Cercle Brugge, which has been postponed until 20 February.

For a bit of fun, I’ve gone head-to-head against Standard Liège fan Laura so you can all laugh at how bad I am at predictions.

Standard Liège 2-0 Kortrijk

There was a good deal of discontent among the supporters before last night’s game due to the recent departures of Réginal Goreux and Sébastien Pocognoli, however, les Rouches continued their assault on the top three thanks to two brilliant goals. Picking up Jelle van Damme’s ball, Michy Batshuayi opened the scoring with a neat turn away from Oussalah before slotting low past the outstanding Darren Keet. The young striker returned the compliment after a  lung-bursting surge forward followed by a perfect defence-splitting ball to the captain, who put it in first-time.

Lokeren – Anderlecht

Both sides find themselves without important players ; Lokeren are without Copa, Harbaoui and Taravel among others while Anderlecht have deemed captain Lucas Biglia to be short of full fitness. Belgian Golden Shoe winner Dieumerci Mbokani is on ACON duty. Demy De Zeeuw is also unavailable but fellow new signing Samuel Armenteros is due to make his bow for the champions. Should Anderlecht win, they will make it eleven in a row. It’s a big game for midfielder Sacha Kljestan, who despite his fine form this season, will be only too aware of the need to remind van den Brom of his quality.

My prediction: 0-2
Laura’s prediction: 1-1

English: Sacha Kljestan with R.S.C. Anderlecht.
English: Sacha Kljestan with R.S.C. Anderlecht. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Beerschot – Mons

Enzo Scifo has done a very creditable job in guiding Mons to ninth in the table at this point in the season but he will no longer be able to call upon the services of his ace goalscorer Jérémy Perbet, who has been loaned to Villarreal. There will therefore be more onus on the likes of Aloys Nong and Mustapha Jarju, who in fairness have had very good seasons. Beerschot seem to lurch from one crisis to another, both on and off the field. Their new-look side was thrashed in Kortrijk last weekend prompting De Ratten to bring back Jacky Mathijssen for a second spell at ‘t Kiel.

My prediction: 1-1
Laura’s prediction: 1-2

Waasland-Beveren – OH Leuven

Although the newly-promoted side have had to let Christophe Lepoint go back to Gent, they did receive attacking midfield duo Jordan Remacle and Stijn De Smet in return. They drew 0-0 with fellow strugglers Lierse last week and will fancy their chances against an OHL side without a win in ten league games. New W-B coach Glen De Boeck has inspired a turnaround, which sees his side unbeaten in the last five with Israeli striker Barak Bradash is starting to prove a thorn in the side of Pro League sides. OHL were hammered 6-2 by Lokeren last time out and to make matters worse are without central defender Robson, who has performed above expectations this season.

My prediction: 1-0
Laura’s prediction: 2-2

KV Mechelen – Racing Genk

Expect a fervent atmosphere Achter De Kazerne this evening with the Yellow and Reds currently experiencing the kind of turnaround Gent would kill off. Danish striker Niklas Pedersen, who defied national coach Morten Olsen’s orders to move to Mechelen, has begun to show his undoubted class in recent matches and is a major threat having scored three in his last two games. Genk have as much depth as any side in the league with the exception of Anderlecht and boast midfielder Julien Gorius who returns to the stadium where he was once a cult figure. Jelle Vossen, runner-up to Mbokani for the Golden Shoe, once again leads the visitors’ attack.

My prediction: 2-2
Laura’s prediction: 1-3

Zulte Waregem – Lierse

Success in this transfer window for Zulte Waregem means holding what they have as they battle to ensure they avoid falling away in the home straight. Habib Habibou had been linked with Leeds but he will take his place alongside the likes of Franck Berrier and Thorgan Hazard in a fixture Francky Dury will be expecting three points from. Lierse will be looking to spoil things – they have ten draws this season and have brought in six players from affiliate club Wadi Degla this month – but it looks bleak for them against a side without defeat in their last eleven league games.

My prediction: 2-0
Laura’s prediction: 3-0

Club Brugge- KAA Gent

The game I am most looking forward to this weekend. There will be a stand-alone preview on the site tomorrow morning.

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