September 27, 2023

Taylor Daily Press

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For Lorenzo Stilenz, the transfer was ‘kind of hell’: ‘Crowd applause when I missed a penalty’ |  Jupiler Pro League

For Lorenzo Stilenz, the transfer was ‘kind of hell’: ‘Crowd applause when I missed a penalty’ | Jupiler Pro League

Although sporting and financial relations have completely changed in recent years, the transfer deal between Club Brugge and Anderlecht always stirred emotions. Mats Rits moves from Jan Bredel to Lotto Park, a transfer Lorenzo Stilenz also made during his career.

25 years ago, Lorenzo Stilenz, 59, switched from Club Brugge to arch-rival Anderlecht. Staelens remembers well that this transfer did not go without hitches.

“The problem was that the transfer had already been announced in mid-April, and that I had to play 10 more games for the club,” Stilenz recalled.

“I was still playing for the club, but I had already signed for Anderlecht. It was kind of hell.”

“The club’s fans no longer wanted me in their team. There was a musical whistle with every touch of the ball.”

“In a cup match against Standard I got a penalty when I was 1-0 down. They whistled at me and when I missed, there was applause in the stands.”

“Coach Eric Gerets also said he could no longer align with me, because it worked against the team.”

I was still playing for a club, but I had already signed for Anderlecht. This was kind of hell.

Lorenzo Stylens

Staelens again took its place, but it was burned for the Bruges supporters.

“We still had to go to Anderlecht with the club and that day we really became champions because we beat another team.”

“I was sitting on the sofa, but when I got off the bus, the Anderlecht fans chanted my name. It was reassuring.”

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“At RSCA I scored in my first game and I was gone. That way I was quickly accepted by the fans and had another great couple of years.”

“It used to be even some kind of betrayal.”

Times have changed, but the shift between the rivals still weighs heavily on fans’ stomachs. “But everyone chooses their future and their career,” Stilenz explains. “And the sport has changed, too.”

“It’s normal in football these days, it was more delicate. I signed somewhere for 5 years and was, as it were, forced to cancel that contract. Now you can leave after a year.”

“In the past, it’s been a bit of a betrayal, and if I leave as a title, as I was at the club, it will hurt me even more.”

However, Staelens fully understands why Rits has now moved to Neerpede. “His contract with the club has expired after this season and he could sign with Anderlecht for a few years. You don’t have to make a fee for that.”

“Whether Club let him go so easily? There’s a new manager who might have other priorities and Rits doesn’t want to be used as a 17 or 18 man.”

“You have to understand that too. He has more confidence in Anderlecht and it’s a good transfer for them.”