Sint-Maria-Oudenhove is almost completely locked in by Brakel and Zottegem. And it's also one of those exceptions in Belgium that officially form a part of two bigger neighbouring villages. But they can definitely do things on their own, also when it comes to football. Example of that is EC Oudenhove.
The first games in the village were played in 1942 when Eendracht Club Oudenhove was founded. The club received matricule number 3651. It wasn't an easy time - being in full war - and in 1946 they pulled back as a member of the Belgian FA. It's unclear whether or not they actually stopped all activities. Only a couple of years later, the same name pops up again.
In 1954, another Eendracht Club Oudenhove became member of the Belgian FA, receiving matricule number 5770. The FA mentions 1954 as official foundation date but the team itself speaks of 1953, only seven years after the previous EC Oudenhove. Possibly there is a link between the two, but we couldn't immediately find proof of that. When we compare with neighbouring village Sint-Goriks-Oudenhove, it's possible the team never ceased any activities at all.
In 1943, Witte Kaproenen Sint-Goriks-Oudenhove became a member of the Belgian FA, after having already played friendlies since 1941. They also withdrew as a member in 1946, but they didn't stop their activities. After some slow years, Witte Kaproenen joined several local FAs since 1968. Years and years later - in 2003 - the team joined the Belgian FA again as Witte Kaproenen Sint-Goriks and received a new matricule number.
Back to EC Oudenhove (or ECO). The first few weeks and months in the 50s, they played on a pitch nearby a church, but immediately works started to have their own ground nearby. By the end of 1954, that stadium was complete and ECO moved to their current grounds. In the meantime it has changed quite a lot, but the Pijperzele stadium never lost its charm. And it looks like the future is assured as well. Recently, in 2020, a merger with bigger brother nearby KSV Sottegem fell through. The hell of ECO will remain.
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