Heading into tonight’s game, a lot of fans were a little bit surprised by the fact that PSV Eindhoven and Basel are competing at this stage of proceedings in the UEFA Champions League. Both teams have done some big things over the years in Europe’s biggest club competition, but now, they find themselves desperately trying to make it into the next stage of qualifying.
Pushing the tempo
The expectation heading into the game was that PSV Eindhoven would be the clear favourites, with their experience and quality shining through for all to see. In the end, though, while the Dutch side wound up getting the first leg win, it was much more competitive than many may have expected.
With that being said, PSV certainly controlled a good portion of the game from a possession standpoint, and also had more shots throughout the course of the 90 minutes. The home fans were getting behind their team with some serious volume in the early stages, and less than 15 minutes into proceedings, they made that home advantage count as they took the lead through Bruma.
It seemed like PSV would ride the wave out until half time, but with just seconds remaining until the whistle blew, PSV let their guard down and welcomed on a Basel surge – with Albian Ajeti being the man to get the equaliser. Basel were able to keep PSV at bay as the game slowly but surely progressed, and then with just over ten minutes remaining, Omar Alderete poked them into the lead to send the stadium into a state of shock.
Thankfully for PSV the football gods were shining down on them, as they put together a memorable late surge to claim the first leg win by the skin of their teeth. Sam Lammers equalised on the night in the 89th minute, and then with not long remaining in injury time, Donyell Malen sent the fans into a state of ecstasy to ensure PSV took a lead into the second leg. That game will take place one week from today, as Basel aim to make their two away goals count.
PSV: Zoet (6), Viergever (6.5), Bruma (7), Malen (7), Bergwijn (6), Lozano (6), Gutierrez (6.5), Rosario (6), Dumfries (6.5), Luckassen (6.5), Sadilek (6), Lammers (7), Gakpo (6.5)
Basel: Omlin (6.5), Cumart (6), Widmer (6), Alderete (6.5), Zuffi (6), Van Wolfswinkel (6.5), Stocker (6), Frei (6), Ajeti (7), Balanta (6.5), Xhaka (6), Okafor (6), Pululu (N/A), Ademi (N/A)
Referee: Andris Treimanis
Goals: Bruma, Lammers, Malen :: Ajeti, Alderete
Yellow Cards: Bergwijn, Sadilek, Widmer, Ajeti, Xhaka
Red Cards: N/A
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