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GROUND // Van Roystadion - FCV Dender EH

Before we went to Eendracht Aalst a couple of weeks ago we also visited the Van Roy stadium in Denderleeuw. FCV Dender EH was also playing in the play offs and had to beat SK Londerzeel for a spot in the top amateur division.

FCV Dender EH is one of those remarkable teams existing of several older teams that all reached pretty high divisions. In fact, it's a merger between Verbroedering Denderhoutem, FC Denderleeuw and Eendracht Hekelgem. We won't go too deep into the history of these three teams (surprise surprise :-) ), but FCV Dender EH started to exist in 2001 when FC Denderleeuw and the neighbouring Eendracht Hekelgem decided to join forces and become FC Denderleeuw EH. Eendracht Hekelgem ceased to exist and the new team was in fact a continuation of the former FC Denderleeuw playing on the former grounds of FC Denderleeuw. In 2005 the team decided to change again and merge with Verbroedering Denderhoutem to have one bigger team in the higher national divisions in the Dender area between Ghent and Brussels. This time the matricule number of Verbroedering Denderhoutem was used but the team moved to the new stadium of FC Denderleeuw EH.

In their fist season as FCV Dender EH they immediately won the championship in third division and promoted to second division. Directly after that the team managed to reach they goals and won the championship to promote to first division. They stayed there for two seasons, but then relegated back to second division. After three years they even went back to third division. This year they had to play for a spot in the first amateur division and they managed to get to their goal.

They have had a number of bigger names as coach. One of the most known names definitely is Johan Boskamp. But there is one coach that seems to be glued to the Dender region; Jean-Pierre Vande Velde was a coach there between 2005 and 2008. Later on he came back in 2012-2013 and last season he was a coach there again. Another big name is Vital Borkelmans who later on was assistant coach at the Red Devils.

The stadium is actually fairly new. It was built in 1997 (after which they moved from their old stadium at the Thontlaan) but got completely renovated in 2007 when FC Denderleeuw wanted to have one big stadium with all commodities for Belgian first division, according to their ambitions.

The three original teams all used to play in different stadiums, the Van Roy stadium actually represents the result of all the mergers. In 2007 two of the stands got torn down and completely new stands were built. There are however some very nice left overs from the old days - looking at the very nice little stand behind one of the goals.

Originally the stadium was named Florent Beeckman stadium, but was changed into Van Roy stadium in 2011. Both names are linked to a chairmain. Florent Beeckman was the main man in the past to take care of FC Denderleeuw. Current chairman André Van Roy spent a lot of money to save the team and as a token of respect the team decided to change the name of the stadium into Van Roy stadium.


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