As a groundhopper sometimes you drive along the highways and by accident you stumble upon football beauties. Especially in Belgium chances are high you'll come across some nice surprises. In the neighbourhood of Namur you can find the charming little field of FC Andoy-Wierde. A relatively young team.
Officially the pitch is 100% on Wierde soil, part of the city of Namur since 1977. But in reality it's right in the middle of the town centres of Wierde and Andoy. Andoy was an independent village for only 13 years (between 1795 and 1808) until it became part of Wierde. Often the villages are being referred to as Andoy-Wierde instead of just Wierde. When it comes to football, both villages had to wait for a very long time before they had a team to call their own. Before the creation of FC Andoy-Wierde, Wierde had nothing. Andoy on the other hand did have Union Sportive Andoy from 1941 to 1947.
After 1947, both teams had to wait until 1976 when Andoy-Wierde Football Club was officially founded. Smart to include both Andoy as well as Wierde into the name. Usually we are not a fan of the use of a 'dash' in a name and in the beginning we thought this was a merger between two teams. This isn't the case at all. There does seem to exist a co-operation with the neighbouring FC Naninne as the fields are being used for youth and training purposes between the two teams.
The pitch of FC Andoy-Wierde calls for typical lower league feelings, but it also takes you back to days long gone. Despite the fact this is a pretty young team and the stadium is rather young as well, it does give you those nostalgic moments. Moments of times when players actually had to cross a street to a neighbouring bar to get dressed. In this case we aren't talking about a bar (although there is a canteen), but to get from the dressing rooms to the area of play, everyone does need to cross a street. A pretty unique sight, not often found in Belgium.
But the lower league feelings get a little bit the upper hand here. The open fields give you wonderful views and they are being accompanied by an ideal and small stand. We'd say it's a typical standing area for a lower league team, but it does contain a wooden bench. A true seated stand, in fact. Not a lot has changed over the past 45 years to the stadium. The dugouts were moved to the other side of the pitch recently though.
We don't think we can expect to see FC Andoy-Wierde in the national divisions any time soon. They've never played in those divisions and it looks like they will stay in the regional leagues for quite some time to come. Not too long ago the club did manage to promote to the third regional league. It's all about fun and happiness right in between Andoy and Wierde!
If you want to enjoy our articles in Dutch, you can read them here.