KV Mechelen – KVC Westerlo

The derby between KV Mechelen and KVC Westerlo has always been a guarantee for goals in recent times. Armed with this knowledge and under a radiant summer sun, our Kempen supporters made their way to the city of the “Maneblussers” where Costa Rican international Josimar Alcocer could count on his first starting spot.

KVC Westerlo Lineup: S. Bolat, D. Haspolat, N. Madsen (93′ A. Sayyadmanesh), M. Frigan (61′ S. Sydorchuk), R. Vermant, G. Yow (61′ R. Neustädter), B. Reynolds, R. Tagir, T. Rommens (91′ E. Jordanov), A. Piedfort, J. Alcocer (61′ K. Vaesen)

First Half

In the opening phase, the home team took control, but the first major chance for Malinwa didn’t come until the quarter-hour mark. After a well-orchestrated attack, Hairemans pulled the trigger, but his shot went wide.

Then, the shot from Rommens barely a minute later on the opposite end was better placed. He forced KVM goalkeeper Coucke into a save, but a well-followed Frigan couldn’t capitalize on the rebound from a sharp angle.

From then on, it was mainly Westerlo dictating the play. A first shot from Alcocer was parried by Coucke, but at the second attempt of the Costa Rican international – after a low cross from Yow – the KVM goalkeeper was helpless.

The 0-1 lead had barely been established when Romeo Vermant was there to double the score. After good pressure from fellow youth international Rommens, Vermant placed the ball flawlessly into the far corner.

The Westerlo machine was now really clicking, and after a fine move by Reynolds, Yow almost made it 0-3 with a header.

A comfortable position seemed to be looming. But as quickly as Vermant had put the 0-2 on the scoreboard earlier in the first half, he received a double yellow card in a remarkable manner just before halftime.

Second Half

With a man down, it was a safe bet that the second half would have a very different complexion than the first. Malinwa emerged from the locker room with renewed vigor and quickly sought the equalizer. A header from Slimani was saved by Bolat immediately after halftime, but the Turkish goalkeeper had to concede defeat to Cobbaut’s blow later on.

KVM smelled blood and pressed on, resulting in another headed chance for Slimani. This time, the Algerian striker found the net with his head, bringing the score level midway through the second half.

The balance on the scoreboard also translated into a regained balance on the field. Our Kemphanen managed to weather KVM’s storm and seemed poised to salvage a point with ten men. Until deep into extra time, when a cross from Storm was unfortunately deflected into the goal by Tagir. The 3-2 was a fact, and thus the curtain fell on a match with mixed feelings for our Kemphanen.

Report: Glen Van Herck
Photos: Peter De Voecht & Thomas Sisk/Photo News