Lech’s series of poor performances continue. In the first leg of the third qualifying round of the Europa Conference League, the team from Poznań lost to Vikingur Reykjavík 0:1.
The match in Iceland was an opportunity for Lech to put an end to a series of unsatisfactory performances which started at the beginning of the current campaign. However, the opening minutes of the match in Reykjavík showed that bouncing back would not come easy to Lech. The hosts were making a statement with their confidence, high pressing, and intense offensive attempt. Whereas John van den Brom’s squad was visibly getting more and more anxious with every pass or shot off target. Therefore, if anybody seemed close to scoring, it was Vikingur. However, Lech successfully managed to stop the hosts from finding the back of the net which they mainly have to thank Filip Bednarek for since he saved his team from conceding a goal a couple of times.
Finally, Lech seemed to have turned the tables as they started to regain control of the game, but still, they weren’t any closer to changing the score – the lack of precision in the final stage of the attacks made it impossible for Mikael Ishak and Joao Amaral to convert their chances into goals.
The last minutes of the first half turned out to be decisive in the context of the whole 90 minutes. Lech’s corner kick surprisingly turned into Vikingur’s counterattack. Ari Sigurpalsson raced down the pitch, took advantage of the hesitation among Lech’s defenders, and beat Bednarek with a beautiful technical shot.
The first minutes of the second part of the match gave hope to Lech’s supporters. The Polish squad returned after halftime with much more energy and determination, however, their enthusiasm seemed to have lasted short. With time, their passes became sloppy, and shots were a rare occasion, which made the second half rather uneventful for Vikingur’s goalkeeper.
On the other end of the pitch, Bednarek was far from bored. The Polish keeper was forced to show his skills numerous times in the last phase of the game. Although Vikingur failed to find the back of the net again, the score wasn’t what Lech expected nor aimed for. Still, at the post-match conferences, coach John van den Brom assured everyone that there was still the second leg and that the squad will show what they are capable of.
The second match between the two sides is scheduled for Thursday, next week (Poznań Stadium, 8:30 pm). However, before Lech faces the Icelandic team, they will play against Zagłębie Lubin (Sunday, 5:30 pm).
Goals: Ari Sigurpalsson (45.)
Vikingur: Ingvar Jonsson – Karl Fridleifur Gunnarsson, Oliver Ekroth, Kyle McLagan, Logi Tomasson – Julius Magnusson, Pablo Punyed, Birnir Snaer Ingason (46. Danijel Djurić) – Ari Sigurpalsson (53. Viktor Orlygur Andrason), Erlingur Agnarsson, Helgi Gudjonsson (86. David Orn Atlason)
Lech: Filip Bednarek – Joel Pereira, Filip Dagerstal, Barry Douglas, Pedro Rebocho - Kristoffer Velde (61. Gio Tsitaishvili), Jesper Karlström (61. Nika Kvekveskiri), Radosław Murawski, Michał Skóraś, Joao Amaral (74. Filip Szymczak) – Mikael Ishak