Antwerp win Belgian Cup

epa08579801 Antwerp players celebrate after winning the 66th Belgian Cup Final, also named Croky Cup, Club Brugge versus Antwerp at King Baudouin stadium in Brussels, Belgium, 01 August 2020. All sports in Belgium had been cancelled due to the Coronavirus crisis. From 01 August sports is allowed again, but without public. EPA-EFE/OLIVIER HOSLET

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Antwerp denied Club Brugge the double as they won the Belgian Cup final 1-0 on Saturday in the first football in the country since the COVID-19 lockdown began in March.

The 34-year-old Israel international Lior Refaelov slid home the winner after 25 minutes to hand Antwerp their first cup success in 28 years.

The game was the only one held over from the 2019-20 season which was cancelled less than a month after the outbreak of the novel coronavirus pandemic with runaway leaders Brugge declared champions.

Yet any hopes Brugge had of adding more silverware were quickly dampened by a strong Antwerp performance with former Liverpool keeper Simon Mignolet making several key saves to deny Antwerp a greater winning margin.

The final had been scheduled for March 22 but was finally played behind closed doors in Brussels just a week before the scheduled start of the new campaign.


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