By Boris Esono N
Football Writer kick442.com-Cameroon
Cameroonian international and Royal Antwerp striker Martin Hongla was on target for his club Royal Antwerp FC as they fell at home in the first leg of the Europa League round of 32 against Rangers.
Borna Barisic scored a brace as Rangers beat Royal Antwerp 4-3, in a thrilling encounter at the Bosuil Stadion.
Martin Hongla played almost the entirety of the game but was substituted at the 90+1mins mark in a tactical decision by Coach Frank Vercauteren looking as Hongla was on a yellow card already.
Rangers of Liverpool great Steven Gerard, current leaders of the Scottish Premiership dominated the encounter with ball possession heavily skewed towards Rangers.
It was Rangers who took the lead at the encounter. Joe Ariibo opened the scoring at 39mins thanks to an assist from Alfredo Morelos.
Royal Antwerp then found their feet in the encounter as just 6mins after going behind the team pulled an equalizer through Felipe Avenatti.
With additional time giving, Royal Antwerp then made sure they went into the break with their noses in front, scoring their second goal through Lior Feraelov at the 45+8mins mark. A lapse in judgment for Antwerp saw Borna Barisic scoring a penalty to bring the scoring to 2-2 at the 59mins.
It was Antwerp who then had their tails in front again as Martin Hongla scored his side’s third goal at the 67mins. It was back and front for both sides with Ryan Kent getting the equalizer for Rangers at the 83mins and Borna Barisic then made sure the victory went to Rangers, scoring his second goal in what will be a thrilling end of the game at the 90mins.
Royal Antwerp and Martin Hongla will hope things will go their way when they go to Scotland for the second leg. The team faces Rangers on February 25, knowing an outstanding victory for them (a victory margin of two or more goals) guarantees a spot at the round of 16.
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