OH Leuven – KVC Westerlo

In the last home game of the season, against provincial rival KV Mechelen, our Kemphans could not make a fist of keeping the three points at home. Two VAR-moments turned in our favour. So on Saturday, our boys will have to go full steam ahead for the last time to finally smuggle in the three points after a negative run of 12 games without victory.

KVC Westerlo

Nick Gillekens was normally meant to be in goal for the last home game, but a nasty eye injury – suffered at the beginning of the week – threw a spanner in the works. On Saturday then, icon Koen Van Langendonck will once again take his place between the posts. This season he is in his 11th season in yellow and blue colours and if everything goes smoothly, it will be his 211 games in the Kemphanen’s shirt. All-time that puts him in third place, after Jefke Delen and Wouter Corstjens.

Strikers Matija Frigan and Romeo Vermant also did not appear on the match sheet. They suffered from minor ailments, and as they have to compete with their countries’ respective U21s soon, it was decided to give them a rest.

It was a tough and difficult season, in which the objective was nevertheless achieved: namely, to secure retention. The past has often shown that the second season of the promoted team is/was not the easiest, so also with our Kemphans. Three trainers passed the revue, another thing we had never experienced before in the quiet Kempen region. Jonas De Roeck coached 17 games, Rik De Mil was at the helm for 13 games and Bart Goor will have performed 10 games as T1.

In the previous edition of the encounter at the King Power@den Dreef, 2 very young Kemphans appeared at the kick-off for the first time this season: Bakary Haidara and Arthur Piedfort. Arthur ended up staying on as a base player for all the matches afterwards and thus he was voted Kemphaan of the season by our supporters.

After the match, everyone will leave on holiday before eventually having to be back in attendance on Wednesday 19 June. From then on, newly-former coach Timmy Simons will sway the sceptre at Kuipje.

OH Leuven

Only on the last matchday of the regular league were they able to avoid the Play downs, by scoring the victory goal in minute 92 against the then untouchable KV Mechelen, who did not have a single losing game to their credit after the turn of the year. Top performance therefore in that match, which would then continue in the Europe Play Offs. Funny thing is that in the 9 games played so far in this mini-competition, they lost only twice, each time against … KV Mechelen. Against Standard they achieved 4/6, against Gent 6/6, against STVV 4/6 and currently 1/3 against us. Nice work, then, from Spanish coach Oscar Garcia, who now scores 1.25 per game in his 28 games for OHL.

Eight players are in the Leuven patch: Konan N’Dri (knee), Thibault Vlietinck (Achilles tendon), Richie Sagrado (ankle)), Sofian Kiyine , Nathaniel Opoku (broken leg), Jonatan Braut Brunes, Alexandro Calut (knee) and Ewoud Pletinckx (ankle). Frenchman Youssef Maziz scored both the most goals (4) and also gave the most assists (6). Icelandic left wing Thorsteinsson followed in his wake with 4 goals and 5 assists.

Ken Vermeiren

This 41-year-old West Fleming will be working as matchkeeper in the Jupiler Pro League for only the second time this season. On matchday 8, he was allowed to lead the match STVV vs KV Mechelen.

Before that, he was allowed to lead matches in the Challenger Pro League. We also had him in this division 12 times in the past – including 10 matches at the Kuipje .

Text and statistics: Peter Boons