The only way is up. Let this be the preliminary conclusion after seven days of play. Lady Fortuna appear to be on leave, so any mistake will be paid for in cash by our Kemphanen. Against Anderlecht, Club Brugge, AA Gent and Antwerp you know it can be difficult, while against Eupen, KV Mechelen and Cercle Brugge there was more in it with a bit of luck. Now for all the doom-mongers: take a look at last season’s ranking after 7 match days, and you’ll see that the red lantern of that season was (and even is this season) the revelation of that season.
Against Antwerp, they were once again playing along nicely until a team error prompted Vincent Janssen’s 0-1. The savvy Great Old then played out the match maturely so that our Kemphians once again lost out.
With Bayram and Sydorchuk in the starting line-up, two of the four brand-new acquisitions immediately appeared in the squad. Fifteen minutes before time, Do(gucan) Haspolat was also allowed onto the pitch, but he too could not turn the tide.
Standard-away has never been a breeze. The first win ever came in the nineteenth Liège encounter, when Benji De Ceulaer scored twice at the Maurice Dufrasne Stadium. It would also remain the only one, as the next three encounters saw two losses and one draw. In fact, this was the last encounter a few months ago when we managed to strike twice in injury time after trailing 2-0.
Coach Carl Hoefkens received another quality injection just before the end of the summer term, which immediately resulted in the first win of the season. The four additions, Hayden – Alzate – Djenepo and Sowah, all appeared in the starting line-up against Eupen. Konstantinos Laifis also got back playing time for the first time.
Looking at the rest of the squad, only goalkeeper Bodart and defenders Bokadi and Fossey are still the same names compared to a few months ago.
Ivorian striker Kanga (Hertha BSC) and Japanese central midfielder Hayao Kawabe (Grasshopper Club Zurich) and new captain Zinho Vanheusden (AZ Alkmaar) are also newcomers.
As mentioned, the Rouches – like our Kemphians – did not have a too good start and failed to win in their first three home games: Union (0-1), Cercle Brugge (0-1) and RWDM (1-1). Things didn’t go too smoothly on away either: Sint-Truiden (1-0), Charleroi (1-1), Kortrijk (1-1) and so the first win last week in Eupen (1-3).
- 35 years
- 11 years refereeing
- 2017: debut in First Division
- 7 matches for KVC Westerlo
- Balance: 3 wins – 1 draw – 3 defeats
- 7 matches for Standard
- Balance: 2 wins – 2 draws – 3 defeats
- First time Standard vs Westerlo
Text and statistics: Peter Boons