BRUSSELS (AP/BELGA) — Anderlecht goalkeeper Bart Verbruggen is looking forward to Game 1 Thursday of the Conference League quarter-final against Arizona. “I feel more ready than ever, and I want to enjoy the game,” the 20-year-old Dutchman said a day before the match in Brussels.
“AZ is a very good team that plays good football, with players who can decide a game with individual work,” Verbruggen says. “Beating Villarreal in the previous round does not mean it will be easy against Arizona.”
Verbruggen, who came from NAC Breda in the summer of 2020, took over from Hendrik Van Crombrugge at the end of December. The experienced Belgian plays an important role in the learning process of the young Brabander.
“He teaches me a lot with his very professional style. He spends a lot of time with me and does a great job. I try to listen to the coach and learn from other goalkeepers. I want to become a complete goalkeeper and so am I,” said the Dutchman.
Verbruggen, who made his debut in Orange coach Ronald Koeman’s squad in mid-March, received many compliments from coach Brian Rimmer on Wednesday. “He is exceptional,” said the Danish coach. “I think he is the best goalkeeper in the league. His performance is excellent.”
The match between Anderlecht and Alfirican starts on Thursday at 9pm. The second leg is scheduled to last for a week.
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