“I think AA Gent has the best chance of becoming champion,” Brecht Dejaegere makes no bones about it.
“When I saw them play against Anderlecht in the 1st half: they were dominant without really creating big chances, but they did play football with a lot of confidence and automatism. I don’t see many other teams like that at the moment.”
“AA Gent’s central defenders are also very strong, both defensively and in build-up.”
Peter Vandenbempt does point out a future problem for the Buffalos: in January the team is in danger of losing a lot of players due to the African Cup and the Asian Cup. “Hein Vanhaezebrouck likes to stand at the wailing wall, but if you list who may be gone, that is still a gap,” Vandenbempt notes.
Arnar Vidarsson, coach of Jong AA Gent, takes action. “I think that 6 to 8 players could possibly be gone. You cannot possibly compensate for that with youth.”
“Going to get players from Jong Gent? Then I won’t have any anymore,” Vidarsson laughs. “You should not forget that the step from promises to the 1st team is the biggest and difficult step. And moreover, it is much more difficult to take that step at a top club.”
Vandenbempt: “There is something wrong with the international calendar when an important player like Hong plays 2 tournaments during the course of the season and is therefore not available for 2 times for a month. I don’t think that is normal.”
“And for AA Gent they are simply incredibly important and decisive players,” Arnar Vidarsson emphasizes. “If they all leave, the chance of the title is simply gone.”
Many Ghent players are eligible for selection for the African Cup (13/01 – 11/02) or the Asian Cup (12/01 – 10/02). In the worst case scenario, the Buffaloes will lose as many as 8 players in January and February.
- Gift Orban (Nigeria)
- Jordan Torunarigha (Nigeria)
- Ishmael Kandouss (Morocco)
- Tarik Tissoudali (Morocco)
- Nurio Fortuna (Angola)
- Noah Fadiga (Senegal)
- Hyunseok Hong (South Korea)
- Tsuyoshi Watanabe (Japan)