Heartbreak for Union Saint-Gilloise as Antwerp progress to Belgian cup final on penalties

Heartbreak for Union Saint-Gilloise as Antwerp progress to Belgian cup final on penalties
Antwerp's goalkeeper Jean Butez celebrates after winning against Union Saint-Gilloise, in the return leg of the semi-finals of the Croky Cup Belgian cup competition. Thursday 02 March 2023 in Antwerp. Credit: Belga / Virginie Lefour

Union Saint-Gilloise missed out on their first Belgian cup final since 1914 after losing on penalties to Royal Antwerp in the semi-finals of the Croky Cup on Thursday evening.

Heading to Antwerp for the semi-final's second leg, Union Saint-Gilloise held the upper hand as they had beaten the Flemish side 1-0 earlier this month. Union opted for more defensive tactics in the first half to maintain their goal advantage.

While they were able to keep Antwerp's chances at bay, Union could not hold on for long enough. In the 64th minute, the Flemish side converted a free-kick to level the tie on aggregate at 1-1. Union had a late flourish of chances but Antwerp defended well and held on until the end of regular time.

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After 30 minutes of extra time, there was nothing left to separate both sides, with the match going to penalties.

Credit: Belga / Virginie Lefour

It wasn't to be for Union. Simon Adingra and captain Teddy Teuma missed their penalties, with Royal Antwerp converted theirs to win the shoot-out 4-3, sending the Flemish side into the final.

Antwerp will face KV Mechelen – who beat Zulte Waregem 3-1 on aggregate in the other semi-final.

Union fans had been hoping for the team's first major final for over 100 years. They will now have to put the disappointment behind them and focus on their upcoming Europa League match against their German team Union Berlin on 9 March.

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