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GROUND // Eisenhowerstadion - KV Bonheiden

When going lower league, we'd expect a typical lower league ground. Meaning a very small covered standing area and maybe (very maybe) a small seating area. Especially when the club has never made it to the national leagues. This is definitely not the case for KV Bonheiden. The Eisenhowerstadion has a beautiful entrance area. Once you pass by this, you are confronted with a rather large grandstand for such a lower league ground. Absolutely wonderful.

Bonheiden is a small village in the neighbourhood of Mechelen and will most likely always remain in the shadow of its bigger neighbour. It’s quite surprising that it took such a long time before Bonheiden finally had their own football team. We believe FC Sint-Anna Bonheyden was the very first one, created in 1928 (while in Mechelen the two bigger teams – KV and Racing – were created in 1904). For fourteen years FC Sint-Anna (what a wonderful name by the way – named after the first grounds near the Sint-Anna chapel) played friendly games and possibly a local FA competition as they only joined the Belgian FA in 1942 (in full war time) as FC Bonheiden. Matricule number became 3750. Who knows what magical number they might have had, should they have joined the Belgian FA immediately.

While playing the regional leagues and going up and down the lower regional divisions, they underwent a name change in 1978. As of then they were being referred to as the current KV Bonheiden, since they were allowed to use the royal naming convention due to their 50 year existence. As a club, KV Bonheiden thinks it’s important to keep football real. They intentionally keep playing on real grass and there is a high focus on their youth academy.

Every once in a while that focus on the youth has its effect on the first team. KV Bonheiden did manage to play the top regional leagues several times. Unfortunately they were never able to stay in that top regional division. But let’s hope they make it back there sooner or later. Currently KVB are top of the league in the third regional league and on their way back up again. With their stadium they deserve a spot higher up, for sure.

Currently KV Bonheiden are leading a league with some nice teams and beautiful stadiums. A couple of examples are KFC Putte, KFC Katelijne (wow – they fell back hard), KSK Wavria and Willebroekse SV. Maybe they are also looking forward to playing KFC Duffel again. The current second amateur team used to play regional derbies against KV Bonheiden (more or less 15 years ago) and they are possibly facing a re-start in the lowest division next season.

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