Union has a lot of work to do if they want to be active in the Europa League after New Year. It will be an almost impossible task after the loss to LASK Linz, as they need to win away at Toulouse and also pick something up against Liverpool at home.
Alexander Blessin sent his strongest eleven out to pasture, but they are clearly starting to feel the succession of matches. Mohamed Amoura was a shadow of the flash player he was against Club Brugge on Sunday. And the other strongholds also did not reach their level.
Union was unable to gain any leverage
After 25 minutes, Burgess even committed hands in the box and Horvath converted the penalty without any problems. Union could not do much offensively and – as in the first match – had a hard time with the defensive block of the Austrians. Even then, the left and right backs barely crossed the halfway line.
The people from Brussels even escaped after a double VAR check in which Burgess did not make a second hand and Usor’s goal was whistled for offside. They themselves created two half chances via Puertas and Lazare, but nothing really to write home about.
No offensive impulses
Just before half time, Union’s job became even harder, as Talovierov headed the score to 2-0 on a corner kick. Union can usually prepare for a heavy offensive in the second half, but not this time. Blessin even seemed to throw in the towel when he took Amoura, Castro-Montes and Vanhoutte to the side before the hour mark.
LASK did what most Belgian teams fail to do: completely block off everything at the back. This is of course not a call to do so, because it completely ruined the spectacle. And Zulj completely closed the books for Union. A free kick came back off the crossbar and the captain just had to tap it home.
LASK takes its first points in the Europa League and can even knock Union out of third place. The Unionists know what they have to do: beat either Liverpool or Toulouse to hibernate in Europe.