Monday, January 15, 2007

Royal Francs Borains – KSK Tongeren (14-01-2007)

Another year, another groundhop. Having returned from the US on Saturday afternoon, after a very tiring 20 hour door-to-door travel, I knew that the best way to ease back into home life is… going for a groundhop with my mate J.B. And so we did. As there was not much on the agenda for Sunday, and we were both not up for a long trip, we chose to stay in Belgium and pick a game in the Derde Klasse B (Third Division B). So, at 13.00 we met up in Leuven and made the comfortable one hour drive to Boussu in the Borinage, close to Mons.

Around 14.15, after a short detour in Boussu, we park our car next to the Stade Vedette – donating one euro in support of the youth program of the Royal Francs Borains. While J. chats with the funny parking attendant, I buy two tickets at 7 euro each, giving access to the whole ground, which counts two stands of unequal size on the long sides.

After a quick stop in the cozy cantina, reminding me off my youth days in the cantina of my (amateur) team V.V.O. in the Netherlands, we made our way to the small stand. The weather was absolutely perfect, some 13 degrees and sunny, and there was a fairly decent crowd of some 400 people (of whom at least 100 were from Tongeren). We took our place between the commentator of the local tv station and the hardcore of the RFB fans, a group of five 70+ fans-for-life.

The game itself was entertaining, but not of high quality. Both teams played fairly defensively and lacked much creativity or technique. The game was played at the edge, but seldom over it. Though there were some chances on both sides, they were few and far between. Fortunately, the weather was very pleasant, as were the atmosphere and company, so none was really bored.

At half time we went to the cantina under the main stand, where we found the same nice and relaxing atmosphere. The second half was much of the same, but with more yellow cards. In the end, the score was the same as at the beginning: 0-0.

True, not a very fiery start of a new groundhop year. But on the other hand, in many ways it was a game to cherish. I feel that 2007 is again going to be a good groundhop year.

No comments: