Preview KVC Westerlo – Zulte Waregem

After qualifying on the bumpy pitch of Aalst, we get to visit red lantern Zulte Waregem. These games are usually the most difficult, as everyone assumes that the three points are just up for grabs.

KVC Westerlo

Our five internationals are back selectable. Only Maxim De Cuyper got playing minutes from his coach, the rest remained on the bench throughout the match.

On Sunday, three players also got their first playing minutes this season. Brand-new dad Kouya Mabea was allowed to start the game, Muhammed Gumuskaya was able to play for almost an hour as a substitute thanks to the extensions and U21 player Glenn Van Hout was also allowed to play ten minutes as a right winger on the pitch. Thus, 27 different players have already been in action this season. Central defender Rubin Seigers is the only one of them to have completed all the minutes. We also saw Edi Jordanov return. He was out for a good two weeks with an injury and he came into the field for Mabea. Igor Vetokele then dropped out again at the last minute, he is taking it a little easier this week. This means coach Jonas De Roeck has 22 players at his disposal from which he will have to make a selection.

Did you know?

  • This will be the thirteenth edition. That in the previous editions we won 4 times, drew 5 times and lost 3 times.
  • The last time we played each other was almost six years ago and we lost 1-2 then.
  • In our last 34 home games, we have won 20 of them and drawn 10.
  • We score most often in the first and last quarter of a game.
  • Maxim De Cuyper is in the top 3 best assist giver. He has currently provided the decisive pass for a goal four times.

SV Zulte Waregem

Den Essevee is in its eighteenth season in the top division. They joined in 2005/2006, having merged with Zultse VV four years earlier. In their first year, they immediately won the Cup of Belgium by beating Mouscron in the final with a goal in added time by Tim Matthys. Nice detail here is that they then eliminated our Kemphians in the quarter-finals after extensions. In 2017, they grabbed their second Cup, this time Ostend were the victims after penalties. The captain in that second final was Mbaye Leye. It was written in the stars that the likeable Senegalese should one day become coach of his Waregem side. No less than three periods he has played football there, namely between 2007-2009, 2012-2014 and between 2015-2017. He is also the club’s all-time top marksman (87 goals).

Since this season, he has been at the helm at the Elindus Arena. He also had to build a new squad, as as many as 17 players cleared their locker in the mid-season. The acquisitions that joined were relatively unknown names. Those who had already heard of Tsouka, Borja Lopez, Drambaev, Sangaré, Palumets, Tambedou, Dismas, Ndour, Offor, Braem and Dani Ramirez must either be a football scout or a connoisseur pur-sang. One new name does sound familiar. Our ex-captain, Nicolas Rommens who came over from RWDM, has also found his niche in this team and is a regular. The core also includes three ex-Red Devils: goalkeeper Sammy Bossut, defender Timothy Derijck and striker Jelle Vossen. So currently they occupy the last place. They did manage to win against Seraing on the opening day, but they barely drew twice in the remaining eight games. Ben Yagan played in 41 games for OH Leuven, 20 games for KSK Heist and 25 games for KSV Roeselare. Striker Mitch Dekuyper scored three times for then Second Division side KVV Coxyde in the 15/16 season and Dutch flanker Dylan George was on the payroll of FC Twente (20 games) and Helmond Sport (nine games).

Did you know?

  • Those 2 draws, each time were achieved at Bruges’ Jan Breydel Stadium, both against Club and Cercle ended 1-1
  • Gambian Alieu Fadera was involved in 5 of the 7 goals scored, he scored twice himself and also gave three assists
  • Captain Bossut was out for almost 100 days in 2020 with a fractured skull and that he has since been goalkeeping his matches with a head protector.
  • That same Bossut’s tally currently stands at 455 games for his club (when you know that our own icon Jefke Delen came out on 391 games…).
  • Their last win away from home came on 26 December 2021, when they went 0-1 down at Standard. Since then, they have been in action away from home 11 times, drawn three times and lost eight times.

Alexandre Boucaut

The Walloon-Brabander, a FIFA referee since 2012, is a very experienced referee. This 41-year-old banker has already been allowed to whistle one match in the European Conference League this season (Bröndby against Pogon Szczecin) and in his own country he has already been allowed to whistle five matches. His total balance comes to 370 conducted matches, including 200 matches in the Jupiler Pro League. Exactly 11 years ago, he already whistled KVC Westerlo against Zulte Waregem. That match too took place on a Saturday night and the the result was a draw (1-1). Then again, the last time he had to manage a match at Kuipje dates back to 25 January 2017. That night we lost to Anderlecht (2-4). Otherwise, the balance with him at the Kuipje really falls in our favour, as of his 10 games here, we won seven and played one draw.

Text and statistics: Peter Boons



Team Pnt
KRC Genk 46
Union 36
Antwerp 35
Club Brugge 33
KAA Gent 30
KVC Westerlo 26
Standard 25
OH Leuven 25
Cercle Brugge 25
Anderlecht 20
Charleroi 19
KV Mechelen 18
KV Oostende 17
KAS Eupen 16
Zulte Waregem 13
KV Kortrijk 12
RFC Seraing 11