Our prediction for this Belgium Pro League match:
All eyes will be on Cegeka Arena when Genk and Antwerp go head to head on Boxing Day. Genk aim to recover from a heart-breaking 2-1 loss to Anderlecht, but they will have to do it without important forward Joseph Paintsil, who misses out through suspension. Head coach Wouter Vrancken will watch the game from the stands as he was sent off at the weekend.
The title holders, on the other hand, dropped two points in a 2-2 draw with Westerlo. As both Antwerp and Genk are eager to return to winning ways in the Belgian top flight, we are tempted to put our money on both teams to score. Midfielder Jelle Bataille is a major doubt after limping off with injury in the last league match, while Ivory Coast international Aziz Ouattara remains on the sidelines with injury. In their last meeting at Cegeka Arena the two sides played out a thrilling 2-2 draw.
Highlighted Player (Patrik Hrosovsky):
Born in Prievidza, Czechoslovakia, Patrik Hrosovsky is a midfielder who plays for Viktoria Plzen. Patrik Hrosovsky started his youth career at his hometown club Prievidza and he played for the youth team of Trencin as well before joining Viktoria Plzen.
The Slovakian footballer has been playing for the Viktorka ever since, but it has to be noted that he played for the likes of Sokolov, Usti nad Labem and Znojmo on loan as well. Patrik Hrosovsky made his Slovakia debut on November 19, 2014 in a friendly game against Finland.
His main position is central midfield, but he is capable of playing as both defensive midfielder and attacking midfielder as well. Hrosovsky has yet to find the net with the Slovakia national football team, but he found the net for the U21 team in a 7-1 win over Luxembourg at the 2015 European Championship. He has a contract with Viktoria Plzen which expires on June 30, 2019.
Highlighted Team (Antwerp):
Founded back in 1880, Antwerp is one of the oldest clubs in Belgium. The Great Old welcome their rivals at Bosuilstadion, the venue with the capacity of 16,144 people. Antwerp are well known for their red home kits, with the team wearing white shirts and white jerseys when playing on the travels.
Over the years Antwerp have been trying to close the gap between Belgian giants Anderlecht and Club Brugge, but they have yet to win the title in the recent history. The Great Old clinched their first domestic trophy back in 1929, with the team repeating the success two years later. The third and the fourth titles came in 1944 and 1957 respectively.
Beerschot A.C. are considered the club’s fiercest rivals, but they have a rivalry with Club Brugge as well. The club chiefs had a long-term partnership with famous English club Manchester United in the past, with Antwerp taking young footballers on loan to Old Trafford.