Jeremy Taravel is being loaned out (with an option to buy) until the end of the season to Swiss side FC Sion.
Today we take a look at some facts about our English opponent Tottenham Hotspur. This is part 2 of our Facts and Figures about our Europa League Round of 32 games against Spurs.
On Thursday we will play our Round of 32 of the Europa League against Tottenham Hotspur. Until then, we will post some facts and figures about our group stage and our opponent. This is part one. KAA Gent KAA Gent and Tottenham Hotspur will play for the first time against each other. KAA nt played 10 games this campaign and won 5. On the day of the first leg fixture, the Belgian coach Hein Vanhaezebrouck will celebrate his 53rd Birthday. It will be his 19th European game for Gent. KAA Gent will play their 99th European game on Thursday night. They will play their hundredth European game in the mythical Wembley Stadium. KAA Gent only played against one English opponent, West Ham United in 1964/65. Both teams qualified for the Europacup II through their domestic cups in 1964. KAA Gent was the first Belgian team to qualify for a European cup through the Belgian cup (more information in Wigwam n.4 p.36 "Terugspeelbal: de Gantoise op Engelse bodem"). The first leg was played in Ghent on the 23rd of September 1964 and ended in 0-1 win for West Ham. The second leg was played in Upton Park, London on the 7th of October 1964 and ended in a 1-1 draw. West Ham United eliminated KAA Gent and eventually won the cup.
A KAA Gent side that played too many lateral passes and lacked pace in the game and a very defensive Eupen side assured a scoreless 0-0 after the first half. Goalkeeper Lovre Kalinic however breathed a sigh of relief after a Luis Garcia free kick passed inches away from his goal post in that same first half. Gent forward Kalifa Coulibaly's header was denied by an excellent save by Eupen goalkeeper Van Crombrugge. The second half brought more excitement. Luis Garcia hit the goal post for Eupen after another free kick. On the other side of the pitch Eupen goalkeeper Van Crombrugge kept his team going after an incredible save on a spectacular bicycle kick of captain Nana Asare. Gent tried to make the winning goal with a final push in the last 15 minutes but to no avail. In injury time Eupen even managed the winner (Onyekuru: 0-1) after a fatal mistake by Lovre Kalinic. A harsh punishment for a goalkeeper that saved his team many times before, including in this game.
Voetbal in de stad steps up a gear. In the Nieuw Gent neighbourhood our communitydepartment will soon open a new community house. ‘Bij Pino’ will be an accessible meeting place at the Rerum Novarumplein containing a coffee bar, a workshop and a share store.
All available tickets for Gent fans for the Europa League game against Tottenham at Wembley Stadium are sold out. This means we'll go to Wembley with about 7000 fans to support our Buffalos!
The renewed fanshop is made to look like a pitch. You enter through the first goal and walk along the players' running lines. There's a seat to rest on the centre spot as well as a miniature stand. Paying at the checkout rounds up the experience as the desks are designed as a second goal.
KAA Gent won the Battle of Flanders against leader Club Brugge with 2-0. The first half saw chances created at both ends, but goal keepers Kalinic and Butelle were on hand to save their team. AA Gent started the second half at a furious pace. Simon hit the post, but then Kubo put the home side one up from a beautifully placed free-kick. KAA Gent remained in control and Coulibaly’s injury time goal finally put the game beyond Club Brugge’s reach. Thanks to this win, the Buffalos scored 3 important points in the battle to reach Play Off 1.
Hein Vanhaezebrouck has announced his selection for the Jupiler Pro League game against Club Brugge KV of Sunday afternoon. The selection contains 23 names, five of them will not make it into the final selection.
Samuel Gigot has left KV Kortrijk to sign a 4,5-year contract with our club. The 23-year old French player, born on 12th October 1993, is a right-footed defender and is 1m86 tall. He is young, fast, strong with the head and can still make a lot of progression.
Yuya Kubo explained that he was very convinced about his choice for KAA Gent: “Gent is a team that has a lot of ball posession and it will be fascinating to get to play and work with such a team. I’m here to improve myself and i feel that this is a place that gives me the chance to do that. The Belgian competition is a bit tougherthan the Swiss competition, so I will have to bring myself to a higher level. I need to challenge myself and improve in places where i can. To the question if he feels pressure being one of the most expensive transfers in the club’s history, he answered: “I wouldn’t call it pressure, more like responsibility to justify that sum.” Yuya also showed his ambition: “I want to play on Sunday. I’m well aware that this is an important match, but if I get the chance to play, I will be ready.”aan.” His first contact with head coach Hein Vanhaezebrouck went very well:” The coach gave me the feeling he really wanted me in the team, which I appreciate very much. He’s a very ambitious coach that wants his team to bring good football.” Our supporters are well known for their unconditional support for the players, which Kubo also noticed: “I hope the Gent fans will support me. I’ll do my best to play in important role in scoring goals and getting the team to win.” Yuya was also impressed by the team's Ghelamco Arena: "This is a very nice stadium and the grass felt good." Furthermore, Yuya announced that he will be playing with the number 31 just like in Bern: "I've had this number since my first team Kyoto Sanga and it has brought me good luck so far so I'm glad I can keep it here." Gent’s Chairman Ivan De Witte is very happy with Kubo’s transfer: “We’ve been interested in Kubo for quite q while, so I’m very proud we finalised this transfer. I believe in Kubo’s qualities.” General manager Michel Louwagie gives some insight in the transfer proces: “This summer we showed interest in Kubo, but Young Boys Bern didn’t want to let him go because some other players were injured. We continued to follow him and in November Kubo asked his agent if Gent was still interested. He sees the Belgian competition as the next step in his carreer and is very realistic. He knows he’s not ready yet for a competition like for example the German one and is planning is carreer very well. That shows he’s grounded. He studied our club intensely, even during our difficult period at the end of last year, and was very convinced about going to Gent. We started our negotions at the beginning of January and mid January another big Belgian team suddenly showed interest. When it became clear our deal was about to be final, the other club called his agent once again to try and change his mind, but Yuya picked Gent. His agent kept his word, something that we can’t take for granted these days. Ivan De Witte concluded the press conference by explaining the difference between players that are meant to immediately join the team, such as Yuya Kubo and Lovre Kalinic, and players who are an investment for the future. He also revealed there will be more transfers: “This is not the end. We’re still finalising some more transfers, both for immediate reinforcement and the future.”
Today Yuya Kubo, a 23 year old Japanese attacker, signed a contract with KAA Gent for 3,5 seasons. Kubo comes from the Swiss club Young Boys Bern, the team that eliminated our Europa League opponent Shakhtar Donetsk in the third qualifying round of the Champions League. Kubo was the one to score the 2 goals in the winning home game. In the following penalty shoot, Kubo also converted his penalty (see video below). Despite his young age, Kubo has gained a lot of European experience. European experience. To thank him for his contribution to the team, Young Boys Bern posted this video:
More than 400 commercial partners were invited on Monday night for the annual New Year’s Reception. A welcome drink, a walking dinner and several speeches and interviews made an exceptional and interesting night. Our president, Ivan De Witte, emphasized the ambition of the club: ”The club has reached 30% of its potential and I am very motivated to realise the other 70%. We did enjoy our first title and I am sure that we can go for another title in the near future!” For him, building a strong “community” is a priority. He did repeat that our coach, Hein Vanhaezebrouck, is a top coach who fits the club’s culture and philosophy perfectly and. He expressed his hope for the coach to stay with our club for many years. Furthermore, he also confirmed that some more transfers will be realized within the next few days. General Manager Michel Louwagie explained how a transfer is done and illustrated this with the example of goalkeeper Lovre Kalinic: "It takes a long time to finalize such a transfer as Lovre was on our radar for many months; our ex-goalkeeper Luc Sanders even went to watch him several times in training. We also have a good cooperation with the club Trencin where we found players like Simon and Rabiu: now Samuel Kalu has joined our ranks!” . The money of the Champions League campaign is wisely spent on transfer and infrastructure: the club has already started building an extra training complex on the site of the third division side Racing Gent. Coach Vanhaezebrouck made a thrilling speech about last season, success in football and things that do influence a game. To keep growing, every part of the club must be ready to grow, so the club has to put the right people with the right mentality on the right positions: "But I really feel that this club is actually growing in the right direction and you can see this on the team sheet where two youngsters, Thibault Desmet and Louis Verstraete, played there first minutes in the first team. Louis seems to be a familiar name with our fans as they already sing his name! Great times are awaiting us : some people were already a bit negative about our results but now we are back in the top 6 and wait…strange things can happen in the decisive ten games of the Play offs! We have already lost some points but a top 3 position is still possible!” Six new players were introduced to the audience by our Communications Director Patrick Lips: Kalinic,Kalu, Tekie, Bjedov, Troost Ekong and Verstraete were all very positive and ambitious! Watch the pictures: everybody was happy and satisfied!
Hein Vanhaezebrouck has announced his selection for the Jupiler Pro League game against KSC Lokeren OV. The selection contains 21 names, three of them will not make it into the final selection.
KAA Gent has started 2017 with a well-deserved 1-0 win against R CHarleroi SC. No goals were scored in the first half, Penneteau made a worldclass save on Mitrovic' header. The best was for the last half hour, when Milicevic opened the score with a header and a goal from Bjedov was disallowed incorrectly for offside. The tension remained as Baby hit the woodwork, but Gent managed to keep the three important points at home, which put them back in the top six of the ranking.