Warning: Beerschot supporters might not read this article. Last season was a succession of lows in all areas. From failed transfers, about wrong trainer choices, inappropriate supporter behavior to dramatic performances. A look back at the long agony towards the degradation of tribe number 13 in as many tragedies.
1. Missed Summer Mercato
Last season’s disappointing return should have been a warning. Beerschot – after the departure of Tissoudali, among others – lacked quality in the core.
Still, the summer transfers at the Kiel are a gamble. Lawrence Shankland, Apostolos Konstantopoulos, Leon Krekovic, Ramiro Vaca, Moisés Caicedo… All guys who showed flashes of potential before, but never on a consistent level.
“I can certainly live with the transfer policy”, however, trainer Peter Maes noted in his preview of the season. “Only at least two more routines need to be added.”
They don’t come in the end.
2. False start to the season
A start to the season does not say everything, but in the case of Beerschot it is very much. The stock number 13 opens the football season with a home defeat against Cercle Brugge. This is followed by a hopeful draw with a visit to KAA Gent.
On match day 3 the value ratios really become clear. Beerschot loses without a chance against PhD student Union with 0-3. “I failed today”, trainer Peter Maes is self-critical. “Because I did not see the coach’s hand. Our team was not there.”
Beerschot would also remain scoreless in the following matches. 1 in 24 is the hard verdict.
3. Peter Maes fired
In the middle of September the knife will inevitably fall for Peter Maes. After the dramatic start, the coach is fired. “Look, this is not only the responsibility of a trainer, also of the board”, chairman Francis Vrancken puts his hand into his own bosom. “Maybe we should have made different choices. We are not afraid to admit that.”
4. Unknown Javier Torrente new coach
Which sinking ship would you rather be on: one with an experienced captain or one that still has everything to prove?
Well, strangely enough, Beerschot opts for the latter. The appointment of the Argentinian Javier Torrente therefore does not in the least cause euphoria at the Kiel.
Few hopeful signs: Torrente only speaks Spanish and some basic French and is only starting his first adventure as head coach in Europe.
So again a gamble.
In his debut against Eupen, Beerschot immediately falls hard against Eupen. Before the break, it has to continue with 9 men. In the end, 0-3 is on the scoreboard.
5. Short-lived revival
Hope gives life.
A few days after the cup win against Franc Borains, Beerschot also recorded a first victory in the competition on 27 October. A resounding 3-0 against relegation competitor Seraing. Beerschot continues to surf on a wave of enthusiasm by taking a point against Kortrijk and winning against Genk.
It is a short-lived revival. Before New Years, the Rats will go down five more times in as many matches.
6. Supporters protest in derby
A defeat in the Antwerp derby always hurts extra. All the more so because of all people Beerschot ambassador Radja Nainggolan scores the only goal on the Kiel.
Although the party will mainly stay with the home fans because of disturbances. throws first a flare in the profession of the Antwerp fans who traveled along.
After the whistle, more chaos follows. At least a dozen hooligans from the home team storm onto the field. The police must screen off the players and the visitors’ area.
Beerschot has to play two matches behind closed doors as a punishment.
7. Blame against Anderlecht
You can’t go lower. On December 27, Anderlecht are humiliated by 0-7 (!) at home.
Raphael Holzhauser, among others, shows how sick the team is. The midfielder decides on his own initiative to play in defence.
It turns out to be a kamikaze action by the Austrian. Because five minutes before the break, Holzhauser is the last man to take down the much faster Kouamé and he is shown red.
Anderlecht deepens the score with childish ease to 0-7. The last goal comes after an unseen mistake by goalkeeper Mike Vanhamel.
8. Dissatisfaction with player group about captain Vanhamel
It is rumbling on the winter internship of Beerschot. The group of players turns against goalkeeper and captain Mike Vanhamel, who allegedly puts himself above his teammates. Moreover, the closing is by no means a convincing season.
The 37-year-old Wouter Biebauw will be the new number 1.
9. Bad Mercato (bis!)
What does a team do in relegation distress? Usually with a strong transfer offensive in the winter mercato. Additions Dante Rigo and Felipe Avenatti rather suggest that the club management has already resigned itself to the situation.
10. Torrent Resignation
The many doubts were justified. Under Javier Torrente things go from bad to worse with Beerschot. Tactically, the Argentinian makes some inexplicable choices – including during the 3-2 defeat at KV Mechelen. The player group also admits that communication is difficult.
On February 7, Beerschot dismisses his trainer with Torrente for the second time, assistant Greg Vanderidt takes over.
11. Debacle around Standard – Beerschot
A legal debacle that you only see in Belgian football. The Standard – Beerschot match seems like a bad joke.
After the mayor of Liège decides in mid-December that the party cannot continue, Beerschot wants a flat-rate victory. The game will be overtaken on March 2. Standard wins – despite a red card – 1-0.
For the green table, Beerschot tries (until today) to get the three points. The last convulsions of a plow on the brink of death.
12. Down in loaded derby
If one thing could save the dramatic season of Beerschot… Or a win at the Bosuil against rival Antwerp, which is still fighting for play-off 1.
The bottom end is also effectively delivering its best performance of the season. With revelation Sebaoui in a lead role. Beerschot only cursed the arbitration after three questionable decisions.
Frey cleared Dom’s opening goal with two goals. The Rats are left empty-handed again.
13. Relegation a fact
What was inevitable will become a reality on Sunday evening. Beerschot loses against (a B-team of) KAA Gent. A few hours later, Seraing wins against Standard, which means that Beerschot is also mathematically sentenced to 1B.
The sad end of an agony.