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GROUND // Stadion Van den Steen-De Mey - Thor Kokerij Meldert

Last week we posted the lost ground of Eendracht Meldert, so it's only logical we also went to the stadium of TK Meldert; only a couple 100 meters away from the lost ground. Thor Kokerij Meldert nowadays is a merger between Eendracht Meldert and the younger and original Thor Kokerij Meldert.

While Eendracht started of in 1955, TK only started in 1972 (almost 20 years later). Thor Kokerij refers to Tot Heil Onzer Ribbekas Kokerij (Kokerij being a small part of Meldert). The first two years TK played in the Catholic FA (just like Eendracht did before) and in 1974 they joined the Belgian FA. The first 20 years or so they mainly played in the regional leagues before they reached the national divisions for the first tim in 1997 (not long after Eendracht did the same).

The first year Eendracht remained the best team in Meldert, but the second year in the national divisions TK took over the number one spot in the village. In 2002 TK was the first that reached third division after a second place in the league. Two years later though TK already relegated back to fourth division. The same year, in 2004, Eendracht and TK decided to join forces. They became Verbroedering Meldert and the new team played with the matricule number of TK in the stadium of TK. The grounds of Eendracht officially became a lost ground since then.

The next years Verbroedering would change good results with bad ones, but they would stay in fourth division. In 2012 Verbroedering became Thor Kokerij Meldert again. Unfortunately that started a decline in their results. In 2014 they relegated to the regional leagues for the first time since 1997 and one year later they immediately had to go to the second highest regional league. Today they still play in that division.

Kevin Franck must have been one of the most known former players of the team. He was a youth product of Real Madrid, originally born in Aalst. He never made it to the A team of Real and 2002 he came back to the area where he came from. After having played for amongst others FCV Dender EH, Eendracht Aalst and KSV Oudenaarde he joined TK in 2012. One year later though he left again for KRC Gent-Zeehaven and Rapide Club Lebbeke.

Although Stadion Van den Steen-De Mey is not as nice as the list ground in the Hoogstraat, it's still a good ground. It is more worthy of a visit during match day though, so sooner or later we will return here!


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