Cercle Brugge – Match Report vs STVV 21/09/2020

On the sixth matchday of the Belgian Jupiler Pro League Cercle Brugge beat STVV with 3-0 at home. Cercle played a very strong first half and was leading 2-0 by halftime. In possession Cercle was fantastic in the first half trying to play it out of the back. Paul Clement’s Cercle set up in a 4-3-3 with Franck Kanouté as the defensive midfielder. The hosts played quite a low defensive line most times and STVV’s defenders were free to have the ball. Once STVV would play in one of their midfielders however Cercle would press very well. In the second half Cercle lost the control and had a lot more defending to do. They struggled more to keep possession and created less in the final third. In the final minutes Vitinho scored the final goal of the game with a nice shot from the edge of the box.

Ratings:

  • A1 – Very good, could play higher
  • A2 – Strong potential to play higher
  • B1 – Good, strong player at level
  • B2 – Potential to be strong player at level
  • C – Average for the level, re-watch
  • D – Below average in this match

Jean Marcelin

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: French
  • Age: 20
  • Date of birth: 12/02/2000
  • Current club: Cercle Brugge, on loan from AS Monaco
  • Career: AJ Auxerre, AS Monaco, Cercle Brugge (L)
  • Position: Centre Back
  • Preferred foot: Right

Jean Marcelin played his first game for Cercle Brugge and after just a few minutes it looked like he already scored his first goal for the club. After a corner got cleared right back Decostere put the ball into the box and found Marcelin. The defender took a great touch and slotted the ball in the far corner. It looked like a great goal, but sadly Marcelin touched the ball with his arm in the process.

Overall the centre back played a fantastic first game. Marcelin played as the right sided centre back next to Bates and showed that he has a lot of potential. The 6’6” tall centre back was a real presence in the air, but never really got tested in aerial duels as STVV didn’t play a lot long passes this game. Marcelin has quite a slim build and should gain some muscle mass, but he is still very young. Defensively Marcelin did very well in his ground duels. The Frenchman liked to step out of the defensive line sometimes to try and put pressure on the ball, but only did this when there were enough teammates near him. Marcelin put in a couple of great tackles and looked unbeatable in his 1v1 duels.

With the ball at his feet Jean Marcelin was really composed overall. STVV never really put him under pressure, but when he was in some smaller spaces he didn’t seem to panick. Marcelin mostly played short passes, but played a couple of nice diagonal cross passes as well. He didn’t take any unnecessary risks and only stepped into the midfield to create more passing opportunities. The only point of criticism I have based on this game is that he needs to communicate better. There were a few moments where he tried to get a ball another teammate was already getting to, but since this were his first minutes this also is something he can easily work on.

Rating – A1

Based on the game against STVV I would say that Marcelin could be a good player for most teams in Belgium. His performance even got him a spot in the Belgian XI of the week. I’m curious to see him against some better opponents though.

Robbe Decostere

Player profile:

  • Nationality: Belgian
  • Age: 08/05/1998
  • Date of birth: 22
  • Current club: Cercle Brugge
  • Career: Cercle Brugge, AFC Tubize (L)
  • Position: Right Back
  • Preferred foot: Right

Robbe Decostere played as the right back for Cercle Brugge against STVV and put in a huge performance. The right back kept making offensive runs for 90 minutes, but also worked very hard defensively. Standing at 5’10” Decostere doesn’t look like the most physical player, but he put a lot of aggression and high intensity in his duels which allowed him to still win most of them. In his 1v1’s Decostere one struggled for pace a single time when Ito dribbled past him, but this didn’t create a dangerous situation. He was positioned well most of the times, intercepting quite a lot off passes on his own half. In his own box he also put in two great blocks, which again showed his willingness to work for the team.

Building up as a fullback can be quite difficult as you have limited options, but Decostere and the rest of Cercle showed that this doesn’t have to be the case. Especially in the first half the right back always had at least two options with the ball. His passing was very good this game as he finished the game with 93% of his passes completed. Almost half of his passes were forward mostly looking for Anthony Musaba or Dino Hotic. In the final third Decostere’s impact could’ve been a little bigger. He put in a couple of crosses, but they lacked quality sometimes. He was always available to receive the ball and helped to create space for Anthony Musaba with his runs. When he or one of his teammates would lose the ball on STVV’s half Decostere would put pressure on the ball or track back as fast as he could, depending on how dangerous the situation looked. Technically Decostere looked fine. He didn’t take too many risks by trying to take on his opponents, but just looked for the easy solution. He was always communicating well and trying to coach his teammates.

Rating – B2

Decostere played a great game and I can see him play for one of the bigger teams in Belgium in the future.

Anthony Musaba

Player profile:

  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Age: 19
  • Date of birth: 06/12/1999
  • Current club: Cercle Brugge, on loan from AS Monaco
  • Career: Vitesse (Y), N.E.C., AS Monaco, Cercle Brugge (L)
  • Position: Right Wing
  • Secondary Position: Left Wing
  • Preferred foot: Right

Anthony Musaba played very well for 45 minutes, but then switched off in the second half before getting subbed off after 79 minutes. In the first half he was very involved in Cercle’s game. He would drop back to help his team in build-up and had some great dribbles in the final third as well.

Musaba’s main strength against STVV was certainly his pace. He surprised his defender multiple times in the first half with his acceleration and showed that he also has great top speed as they couldn’t catch on to him. In the 4th minute Musaba beat STVV left back Matsubara on the edge of the box. The winger easily passed his opponent, but then tried to shoot instead of putting a cross in from a dangerous place. Musaba only put in two crosses in the whole game, one of them was just headed over by Ugbo and the other one was blocked, which he probably should’ve done a bit more often as Cercle had quite some players in the box often.

His technique let Musaba down a couple of times. He struggled to control long balls coming in from the left and when he had possession in small pockets of space he took a couple of awkward touch which lost him the ball. It wasn’t all bad though as he also did some very nice things with the ball, with some great first touches allowing him to turn fast. His passing was solid throughout the game, but again at some times he was just a little too sloppy. Especially in the first half he was always open to receive the ball and played some good first touch passes to keep the high tempo.

Rating – B2

Anthony Musaba certainly showed that he has a lot of potential, but he still needs to improve a lot. He is a smart winger that is not afraid to use his left foot as well. He can surely become a good player in Belgium or in the Dutch Eredivisie.

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