Winter acquisition Christalino Atemona wants to grow at KV Kortrijk: “Learning from the older boys”

© KV Kortrijk

The second winter reinforcement of KV Kortrijk made its official debut last Wednesday. Christalino Atemona (20) endured a successful test period and then signed a contract with KVK until the end of the season. “Everything here is new to me.”

Elian Coussement

At half-time Storck sent his compatriot and debutant Christalino Atemona onto the field. The German central defender came to relieve João Silva. For Atemona these were his first official minutes in Kortrijk employment and also his official entrance at the highest level. “It felt good to make my debut against KV Mechelen in the cup”, says Atemona. “I had to wait a while, but it was worth the wait. In retrospect, it is a pity that I was not able to cash in on my debut with a victory and a ticket to the semi-finals of the Croky Cup. We didn’t play a bad game. To conced a late goal always hurts, especially for a defender.”

Past at Hertha BSC

In mid-December, Atemona suddenly appeared at KV Kortrijk. The German practiced against Cercle Brugge and was allowed to complete a test period. With success, because it turned out to be the reason for a contract until the end of this season. That commitment can be extended in the right circumstances. “I will honestly admit that I actually did not know the club before I was allowed to come here for a trial. Of course I knew the league and the big teams in Belgium, but KV Kortrijk? I hadn’t heard of that yet. When they offered me a test here, I wanted to grab it with both hands, because it was a unique opportunity for me. I had some problems at my previous club (Hertha BSC, red.), but I don’t want to go into that. I am happy that this club believes in me.”

“It is purely coincidental that the coach also has a past at Hertha BSC. I actually didn’t know him. My previous coach in Germany had already told me about him. Storck wants his men to always go for it and to do it well, I notice that. He is a strict trainer, but if we get the desired result, then he is of course satisfied.”

Strong bear

But who is Christalino Atemona now? The central defender made his debut at the highest level against KV Mechelen. At Hertha BSC he only played in the youth series of German football. The Kortrijk fans are getting to know their new addition little by little. “I am strong and I am best in a one-on-one duel with an attacker,” says Atemona. “My passing and the pace of my game still need to improve, but that will be fine. I’m here to develop and learn from the older guys. Everything here is new to me, except that I have already played in a three-man defense with the German national youth. I feel that I still have to get used to the level. At Hertha I trained with the big boys a few times, but now I do that every week. I’ll be fine, I believe. And with the team? We’ll be fine. We are doing better in the league for the time being, but we will continue to fight to stay in the highest division next year.”

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