Genk – Zulte-Waregem
Genk faces Zulte-Waregem in the Europa League playoff in the Belgian First Division A. One of these two teams will qualify for the European competitions next season. The question is – which one?
Genk finished 5th during the regular season in the First Division A. They had 44 points and a record of 11 wins, 11 draws and 8 losses. That’s how they qualified for the playoffs of the best six teams in the league.
During the playoffs Genk finished 5th in the standings. In 10 games they won four times, made four draws and suffered two defeats.
Zulte-Waregem finished 9th in the First Division A during the regular season. They managed to win 37 points with a record of 11 wins, 4 draws and 15 defeats. We can’t say that they had the best season possible, but in the end now they are just one win away from participating in the Europa League.
Zulte-Waregem finished first in Group A of the Europa League playoffs. They were almost perfect in the group – 9 wins and 1 draw from 10 games played.
In the semifinal of the Europa League playoffs Zulte-Waregem faced Lokeren. It was a dramatic game at the Regenboogstadion in Waregem. The match ended with a 1-1 draw in the regular time. In the extra time the two teams scored one more goal each, which led to a 2-2 result and penalty kicks. Zulte-Waregem were better from the spot and that’s how they reached the final of the playoffs.
Genk are favourites in the final, of course. They finished higher in the standings and they won themselves the right to play at home in this match. For sure this is going to give them a big advantage over Zulte-Waregem. But don’t be too quick to write off the away team.