GROUND // Lindekouter - Erpe-Mere United

Mere FC (and all of the teams that have been absorbed) is no longer. They underwent a merger with the neighbouring KRC Bambrugge. But what will happen to the grounds of Bambrugge? We went by to check it out...

Bambrugge is one of the many smaller parts in Erpe-Mere. But unlike the other villages there was only one club in Bambrugge. A team with a solid basis, we have to admit. Although they had to wait a bit longer before the people could start enjoying football. Only in 1949, Racing Club Bambrugge was founded. One year later they joined the Belgian FA.

There was huge similarity with the other teams in the bigger environment of Erpe-Mere. RC Bambrugge kept playing in the regional leagues for a very long time. We can't even start to imagine how many local derbies there have been played in Erpe-Mere. Just like some other clubs, they managed to reach the second regional division several times. But it was KRC Bambrugge who managed to reach the top regional league in 2009 for the first time. Exactly 50 years after their foundation.

That seemed to have been the start for more, despite talks to merge having started already. KRC Bambrugge only just missed promotion to the national divisions by losing the playoffs. In 2013 they relegated again, but they had gained taste for more. Exactly five years later KRC Bambrugge was back in first provincial league and ever since they never had to look down again.

In the meantime those merger talks remained and became more and more serious. KRC Bambrugge had one final lash out in 2020 though. After a wonderful streak in the Belgian Cup, they promoted at the end of the season as the first team in Erpe-Mere to the national divisions; the third division (fifth level in Belgium). Sadly enough their debut was postponed the following season due to Covid-19. Again a year later, their real debut was started as Erpe-Mere United. The merger with Mere FC became a done deal in 2021.

That merger kept on playing in the old glory of the Lindekouter. But that seemed to be temporarily. EM United had a great end result. Due to the fact SK Lochristi (5th in the league) voluntarily relegated to the regional leagues, EM United could take their spot in the playoffs and there they managed to gain promotion to the second national division; against all odds.

That promotion meant the end of the Lindekouter as we know it. Since Lindekouter is not approved for football in the second national division (fourth level), the team had to look for other solutions. Right now Erpe-Mere United plays their A games on its C-pitch; Steenberg. But they're anxiously looking forward to their new stadium, presumably to be built on the old grounds of Mere FC.

If you want to enjoy our articles in Dutch, you can read them here.