Preview KVC Westerlo – RE Virton
For the last game of this calendar year, we have red lantern Virton visiting. They parted ways with coach Christophe Grégoire last week, after the draw against Lierse. At the time of publishing this article, a new T1 had still not been appointed. Our Kemphanen are looking for their fifth home win this season.
Virton’s most famous name is not on the field, but next to it. The secretary-general listens to the name of Oguchi Onyewu. This Nigerian American is best known to Standard supporters. In 2008 and 2009 he helped them to win 2 league titles. In 2018, the central defender – with 67 caps for Team USA – retired from football and started focusing on his future after professional football.
He was appointed to the Luxembourg club at the end of August and he also took on the administration of the club outside the youth academy.
On the field we mainly find a mix of young talents from foreign clubs. Who knew Ghazoini, Rizzo, Droehnle, Doué, Guillaume, Kryeziu and Anne before the season? This seven is the basis of this team, supplemented by slightly more famous names such as Sadin, Allach, Aabbou and Sula. Two of those eleven names will certainly not be on the game sheet on Sunday. Defender Droehnle is out with a serious injury until the end of the season and attacking midfielder Allach has been given a yellow ban. Goalkeeper Sadin is a reliable closing post and captain of the team. Remarkably, he plays with jersey number 8. At the back we find three central figures: the Moroccan Italian Ghazoini, the Italian Brazilian Rizzo and the French Ivorian Doué. We actually find dual nationalities throughout the team. Because the trio of midfielders Kryeziu (Kosovo-Slovenia), Masangu (Belgium-DR Congo) and the suspended Allach (Morocco-Belgium) also have 2 passports. The team’s top scorer is Souleymane Anne. The international of Mauritania was plucked from the B-team of EA Guingamp in the summer of 2020 by the Portuguese CD Tondela. He has scored six goals after eleven matches played.
6: Souleymane Anne
3: Ayyoub Allach
2: Din Sula
1: Marc-Olivier Doué, Valentin Guillaume en Jamal Aabbou
Professionalism, a term that has become even clearer since last week. When referee Brent Staessens decided not to let the match go on in Molenbeek due to the sudden snowfall, our coach immediately started looking for an alternative solution.
Instead of getting on the bus again and driving towards the Kuipje, we made a stop in Neerpede to train there.
Thanks to the good connections of our coach, we were able to go there and our Kemphanen got to process a tough training.
In the core of 29 players, there are currently 6 players on the side. Van Hout, Jordanov, Seydoux, N’Diaye, Dierckx and Gouré are rehabilitating or training separately, in order to be able to rejoin the group soon. It is worth mentioning that Tuur Dierckx, who has been injured for a long time, hopes to get some playing minutes during the last competition match against RWDM (weekend of April 15). Some players are on edge. Mabea, De Cuyper and Van den Keybus are all on 4 yellow cards. With the next carton of the same color, they will miss the next match that will be played in the weekend of January 21, at home against Deinze
8: Erdon Daci
5: Jan Bernat
3: Lyle Foster en Tuur Dierckx
2: Maxim De Cuyper, Kyan Vaesen en Lukas Van Eenoo
1: Edi Jordanov, Fernand Gouré, Léo Seydoux en Thomas Van den Keybus
Sunday will be the ninth time we look for points against Virton. The first time we played against each other was in the 2013/2014 season, the year in which we became champions. In Virton we won 0-1, goal by Jens Cools. In the home game we sent Les Verts de Gaume home with a dry 5-0. After 12 minutes this match was already over, after goals from Annys, Sherjill MacDonald and Lecomte. Later in the game Sherjill scored his second of the day and Jens Cools also scored another goal.
Six years later, the following games were scheduled. Both in the Kuipje and in the Stade Yvan Georges they lost with 1-0, to then play each other twice later in the season. First 1-1 in Virton, where Koen Van Langendonck was ruled out after 8 minutes when he stopped a broken player incorrectly and then a 2-1 victory in the Kuipje on the penultimate match day with Ambroise Gboho’s apotheosis goal in minute 86. So we stayed in the running to reach the final, but everyone knows what happened on the last match day.
This season we have already achieved 2 positive results. We won 2-0 on both match day 1 (in Virton) and match day 9 (in the Kuipje).
Quentin Pirard will visit Het Kuipje for the fourth time as head referee. The 3 previous matches were a mixed success. The first time was also in December, in a match against leader KV Mechelen (1-3). Two years later, he was allowed to oversee the Kempen derby against Lierse (2-0 victory), and then in August of this year to oversee the match against RWDM (0-0). We also had him five times on the move. Two wins (0-1 Roeselare and 1-2 Mouscron), 1 draw against Lierse (0-0) and 2 losses (2-0 against Union and 2-1 against RWDM).
Text and statistics: Peter Boons