This was the weekend when Lierse coach Eric Van Meir did not resign and when Standard Liege fans could claim that referees always favour the city slickers of Anderlecht.
Last week, Van Meir resigned after his side’s defeat to Sint Truiden. The next day he was convinced to stay on and Van Meir agreed he’d been “too emotional”. This week, he took his side to Sclessin and saw them lose 7-0 to a Standard side inspired by a rejuvenated Axel Witsel and Mehdi Carcela. The man of the match was, arguably, Lierse keeper Eiji Kawashima. And yes, Lierse did resemble Blackburn Rovers and no, Van Meir is still Lierse coach.
Over at Constant Vanden Stock stadium, Anderlecht – with quite a few reserves – were losing 1-0 against bottom club Charleroi after 12 minutes. Then Charleroi’s Samuel Fabris was red-carded, Jonathan Legear came on at half-time, Charleroi went down to nine men – with Ederson being dismissed – and Anderlecht ran out 4-1 winners.
With Genk losing on Friday night, Anderlecht are back on top of the league for the first time since the season’s opening day. Francky Dury’s Gent will be happy to have beaten one of the ‘big’ five at last. However, that ‘five’ is now arguable ‘four. Club Brugge lost at Sint Truiden and coach Adri Koster actually said he had seen some good things. He did not confirm that these were on the pitch.
All the other games played were drawn. Honourable mentions go to Standard Ivory Coast striker Gohi Bi Cyriac, who hit three against Lierse to take his title to seven for the season, Faris Haroun who scored Germinal Beerschot’s first goal in seven hours and Junior Kabananga (21) who scored after coming on late for Anderlecht.
1. Anderlecht 37 points; 2. Genk 36; 3. Gent 32; 4. Standard 30; 5. Lokeren 29.
12. Sint Trond 17 points; 13. Germinal Beerschot 14 points; 14. Eupen 12 points; 15. Lierse 9; 16. Charleroi 7.