Like the pluviometer, the sound meter was working overtime in the Kuipje. Both the Kemphanen and the Canaries supporters were not intimidated by the heavy rain and showed their best side vocally.
Line-up KVC Westerlo: S. Bolat, P. Perdichizzi (90′ M. Frigan), B. Haidara (90′ L. Van Eenoo), J. Bos, N. Madsen, S. Sydorchuk, G. Yow (70′ Matsuo), E. Daci (70′ L. Stassin), B. Reynolds, E. Bayram, A. Piedfort (80′ D. Haspolat)
After barely five minutes of play, Bocat gave another hefty turn of the volume knob to his supporters in the away box. The Frenchman reacted quickest after some turmoil in front of the Westel sixty and poked the opening goal mercilessly on the board.
However, the Kemphans’ reaction was not long in coming. After some tumult again – a deflected shot against the pal plus a lengthy VAR intervention – it was Emin Bayram who hung the boards back in balance.
In the ensuing minutes, both Piedfort and Daci tried again to create an imbalance on the scoreboard, but neither Kemphans got past the visiting goalkeeper Suzuki.
Whoever did manage to put the ball into the net unerringly was Madsen. From the edge of the penalty area, he picked up a deflected ball and coolly shot the ball into the lead.
An eager STVV went in search of the equaliser at the start of the second half. On three occasions, the Canaries set their sights on Bolat’s goal, but attempts by Koita, Steuckers and Zahiroleslam all failed to beat the Turkish goalie.
On the Westel side, a blast from Haidara caused a stir in the visiting sixteen, but his peg zoomed just over Suzuki’s cage.
Whose peal did hit the target, however, was Koita’s. He flawlessly converted a lightly awarded penalty kick a quarter of an hour before time after unfortunate hands from Bayram. The same Koita caused more deception in the Westel camp not much later, by also chasing the leather against the ropes from 16 metres on free-kick.
A Westel chase hunt was imminent and came quickly. A shot from Bos, who had broken away with him, was deflected past a surprised Suzuki by Frigan. For a moment, our Kemphans even seemed to leapfrog, but a header chance by Frigan lacked precision and another VAR intervention ultimately failed to yield a penalty. Thus, a spectacular evening of football ended in a 3-3 draw at’t Kuipje.
Report: Glen Van Herck
Photos: Nico Vereecken/Photo News