It was a convincing win in the regional derby last week. Our Westel was strong, created more than enough chances again and confirmed once again that for attractive football you have to (go to) watch a Kemphanen game.
Our coach Jonas De Roeck finally opted for Kyan Vaesen, to replace Lyle Foster, who had left for England. The striker immediately thanked by scoring his tenth and eleventh goal in Westerlo’s shirt. Incidentally, it was also the first time he could score 2 goals in 1 match. The first goal was delivered by captain Lukas Van Eenoo. Lukas had read the previous preview well, as he managed to reach 2 milestones in one fell swoop, namely 150 games in the yellow and blue shirt, which he added to by notching his 100th decisive action in his career (51 goals and 49 assists).
Less good news came from the side of Nacer Chadli and Thomas Van den Keybus. Both had to leave the pitch early due to (minor) injuries. Wonder if our medical staff can patch them up by Saturday.
During the final days of the transfer window, it was windless in and around Kuipje. A new deep striker did not arrive, but a first ever Asian player did arrive in the Kempen. Yusuke Matsuo (松尾 佑介) is a 25-year-old winger who played for the Urawa Reds, who finished 9th last season and with whom he entered the AFC Champions League. Urawa reached the final, which, however, is yet to be played in April. Yus – as his teammates call him – scored six goals in that Champions League and he also gave away four assists.
Star keeper in midfield, Nicolas Madsen, was voted Kemphaan of the month in the last two months, in which Max De Cuyper finished 2nd each time.
By the way, the outward match was the one in which we saw two star players drop out for a long period of time: after half an hour Jan Bernat (still rehabilitating) had to leave the field and a little past the hour, Lukas Van Eenoo (out for 4 months) also had to give up. A less fun know-it-all is that Jonas De Roeck is still looking for his first win against Eupen. In the past, he coached his teams 5x against Eupen, resulting in 2 draws and 3 defeats. In contrast, both coaches have already faced each other once and Jonas emerged victorious.
A few months ago, the Pandas from the East Cantons came to take the 3 points like a thief in the night at Kuipje. Five minutes before the whistle, they scored at the first opportunity and goalkeeper Moser managed to stop a penalty kick by Tuur Dierckx in the closing seconds.
Coach these days is Edward Still. Started at the beginning of the season at Charleroi. In late October, he was shown the door there after disappointing results and started 1 month later at Kehrweg. Since then, he coached 6 matches. The first game in Seraing was won, the next 5 ended in draws twice (1-1 at OHL and last Wednesday 1-1 at home against Genk) and 3 defeats (at home against Charleroi 1-2, at home against STVV 0-2 and at Standard 3-1).
Four new players saw recent appearances at training. Central defenders Aleksandr Filin and Loïc Bessilé – coach Still still knew from his time at Charleroi -, Belgian midfielder Brandon Baiye, who came over from France’s Clermont Foot and striker Davo, a Spaniard who made the fine weather in the Ekstraklasa (Polish First Division) with Wisla Plock, in which he found his way to goal nine times in 18 games.
Their line-up Wednesday against Genk was as follows: Moser, Van Genechten, Paeshuyse, Lambert, Alloh, Magnée, Deom, Peeters, N’Dri, Bitumazala and Prevljak.
Just to mention that central defender Boris Lambert received his 5th yellow card and consequently will not attend.
We get this 26-year-old referee as matchkeeper for the third time this season. Nice detail is that he also whistled the previous clash between the two coaches. On Saturday 17 September, it was he who whistled the Charleroi-Westerlo match. His second appearance for us was less enjoyable, namely the 6-1 against Genk. On matchday 5, he was already a guest at the Stadion am Kehrweg, Eupen losing that night against Seraing (1-3). If we look further down his list, we see that Westerlo are second ahead of him in terms of matches flown. This is going to be the 11th confrontation, 6 wins, 2 draws and 2 defeats provide the statistics.
Text and statistics: Peter Boons