Ricky van Wolfswinkel once again emerged as a key piece for FC Basel in a game where the Swiss champions needed him the most. The Dutchman scored the decisive goal as FC Basel topped PSV Eindhoven 2-1 at St. Jakob-Park, a result that sent the Swiss club into the next stage of the UEFA Champions League Qualifiers. Eray Cömert scored Basel’s first goal, while Bruma had previously equalized for the Eredivisie runners-up last season.
Basel’s impressive start sets the tone for the rest of the contest
Basel had their backs against the wall following the 2-3 loss in the first leg at Philips Arena, but they only needed six minutes to recover the lead on the aggregate score. A free-kick from the edge of the box allowed Cömert to open the score, as the centre-back blasted a thunder that went past Jeroen Zoet after hitting the underpart of the crossbar.
The hosts were close to add a second goal when van Wolfswinkel missed a rebound from close range, and that sequence woke PSV up. The Dutch side equalized in the 23rd minute thanks to Bruma, as the Portugal international nodded the ball home following a pinpoint cross from Donyell Malen. The first half ended with a 1-1 draw, but it seemed everything was still up for grabs.
Against all odds, PSV were the more positive side after the break. Hirving Lozano and Steven Bergwjin both had clear scoring chances, but either Jonas Omlin or the post denied them. Basel barely threatened PSV in the first 15 minutes, but they made the most of the first clear scoring chance they had after the break. And it would be van Wolfswinkel who could flip the script for the home side.
Van Wolfswinkel seals the deal for Basel
A delightul pass from Valentin Stocker found the Dutch striker inside the box, and the former Norwich City striker placed the ball past Zoet with a finish into the bottom right corner. Out of nowhere, Basel jumped to a 2-1 lead and the lead on the aggregate score thanks to the away-goal rule.
PSV tried to spark things up with the entrance of Cody Gakpo replacing Hirving Lozano, but the move wouldn’t pay off. In fact, Basel could have added another goal into the mix, but Albian Ajeti could not take advantage of the chance. Fabio Verissimo blew his whistle after the stoppage time was over, and Basel clinched a spot in the next round of the UEFA Champions League Qualifiers.
Basel will now collide against LASK Linz. Meanwhile, PSV will wait for the UEFA Europa League to decide their fate.
Basel: Omlin (6); Widmer (6), Cömert (7), Alderete (6), Xhaka (5) (Petretta (-), 81’); Balanta (5), Frei (6); Stocker (6), Zuffi (5), van Wolfswinkel (7); Ajeti (5)
Bench: Nikolic (GK), Dimitriou, Campo, Zhegrova, Bua, Pululu
PSV: Zoet (5); Dumfries (5), Luckassen (5), Viergever (6), Sadilek (5); Rosario (6), Gutierrez (6); Lozano (5) (Gakpo (5), 76’), Bergjwin (5), Bruma (6); Malen (6)
Bench: Ruiter (GK), Boscagli, Teze, Sainsbury, Pereiro, Hendrix
Goals: Cömert (1-0, 8’), Bruma (1-1, 23’), van Wolfswinkel (2-1, 68’)
Referee: Fabio Verissimo (POR)
Yellow Cards: van Wolfswinkel, Xhaka, Alderete (BAS); Sainsbury, Bergwjin, Sadilek (PSV)
Red Cards: None
Venue: St. Jakob-Park
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