Not that far away from Beveren and Antwerp, we can find Kruibeke. It may not be a big name in the public eye, but it does have a very old team which is competing to play in the national divisions for quite some time now. KFC Jong Vlaanderen Kruibeke can also almost start preparing a centennial party.
Most villages have to undergo several attempts before they can start building their very own football club. But in Kruibeke this didn't happen. A first attempt was made as early as 1939 and it seemed to be a success from the start. Because KFC Jong Vlaanderen is still alive and kicking. They started before the war in the East Flemish regional leagues as Football Club Jong Vlaanderen Kruibeke.
Back then there weren't so many regional leagues we have to admit, so it might not come as a surprise they managed to promote to the top regional league in 1956. After two years however they relegated again and as the regional leagues expanded they went through all of them. Football Club Jong Vlaanderen Kruibeke had to wait until 1985 to get back to the second regional league. But afterwards the game of going up and down steadily continued.
In 2007 the team did promote again to the top regional league and for ten years straight their fight for promotion to the national divisions started. Twice FC Jong Vlaanderen Kruibeke came very close, but eventually they did the exact opposite by relegating in 2017. For a brief moment they returned, but right now they're still in that second regional league in East Flanders.
No national football and yet they have a unique stand at the Kerkeputte. A stand worthy of national football. Very recently KFCJV Kruibeke decided to work together with the neighbouring HRS Haasdonk for their youth teams. Would that be a first step towards an actual merger? For now that is not the path they want to follow. The Flemish warriors from Kruibeke keep on fighting to get back to the top regional league though.
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