He is actually an eight, but Stjepan Loncar does an excellent job on the six at KV Kortrijk: “I am exhausted after every match”

“The arrival of Storck has breathed new life into this club. We analyze every opponent in detail, but the most important thing he does is that he gives us the right energy for a match”, says Stjepan Loncar. — © BELGIUM

While Bernd Storck (59) is scouring the transfer market in the hope of finding a ‘real’ six, Stjepan Loncar (26) has to act as a defensive midfielder for the time being. By nature, the Bosnian is more of an eight, although he excels in his new position and can present some impressive statistics. “On the sixth I have to walk more, but I like that.”

Elian Coussement

Both KV Kortrijk and Loncar had a difficult start to the season. The results of the team were not too good and the midfielder’s game was not really convincing. After the third trainer change at the Veekaa we can talk about a completely different story. KV Kortrijk plays well, with a lot of passion and with a high pressure on the defense of the opponent. Loncar is also gradually emerging as the leader of the red and white midfield. “I wasn’t really happy in the beginning,” says the Bosnian. “The results were disappointing, there was a lot of dissatisfaction within the club and my game wasn’t anything to write home about either. The arrival of Storck has breathed new life into this club. We analyze every opponent in detail, but the most important thing he does is to give us the right energy for a match. We started to believe in ourselves and that led to good results. I am really happy now.”

Call from Custovic

Eleven matches for the Bosnian national team, more than thirty matches for the Hungarian top club Ferencváros and a taste of European football: Loncar has already had a good start. “Ferencváros is the best team in Hungary. In every game we had more than seventy percent of the ball, plenty of chances and we were on the field with better players than the opponent. Not illogical that I became champion there and took the cup. In Belgium you could compare them to Club Brugge or Genk, not really to KV Kortrijk.” (laughs)

“My choice for KV Kortrijk was actually very last minute”, Loncar remembers. “I was looking for options and suddenly got a call from Adnan Custovic. I knew him from my time with the Bosnian national team, where he was an assistant. It was always nice to represent my country, but it might be a while before I get called up again. I have to put myself in the spotlight of the new national coach. But Custovic convinced me to sign with KVK. Dino Hotic from Cercle Brugge and my best friend Franko Andrijasevic (ex-Ghent and Waasland-Beveren, ed.) also made my step into the Belgian league easier. They told me it’s a strong competition with a lot of pace. That turns out to be the case, but I can handle that.”


By nature Loncar is more of an eight, but out of necessity Storck places him on the six. A position where you have to walk a lot. “In the beginning I had to adapt a bit to this new role. Now it’s going well. I have to walk more on the six than on the eight, but I like that. It’s my style. I run an average of eleven kilometers per match, so it will certainly not surprise you that I am exhausted after every match.”

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