New trainer Peter Claessens wants to lift HO Wolvertem Merchtem from the middle bracket: “The openness of the association made me tack”

Football 3rd Division VV A KHO Wolvertem Merchtem

Peter Claessens does it for a while before training. The new coach of HO Wolvertem Merchtem has therefore put together a nice palmares in his younger years. — © Kms

Can a different picture be imposed in the coming season? That hanging around in that right side of the table and finally having to fight against relegation is a lost number at HO Wolvertem Merchtem. If it depends on the new trainer Peter Claessens (57), then that will certainly be the case.

The sports teacher from Schoten carries a well-filled football bag with him. He was a professional footballer for thirteen seasons and played nine seasons at Beerschot. “Waregem and Eendracht Aalst, where I met Jan Ceulemans and Gilles De Bilde, also passed in review,” said Claessens, who then earned his stripes as a trainer at clubs from the first provincial to second division. He is also familiar with coaching U23 and elite youth teams. After Cappellen, Berlaar Heikant followed and last season Claessens worked for FC De Kempen, formerly FC Tielen. “With the latter club, where I was a bit blinded by the accommodation, the history and also the strength of the group of players, I still finished sixth in the first provincial with an unprecedented formation,” Claessens begins.

“Suddenly Wolvertem Merchtem came beeping and after a few conversations with sports manager Cris Lion and chairman Jan Lathouwers I had a good feeling, to the extent that I let go of a job as T2 at Lierse Kempenzonen. The latter would have been difficult to combine with my work. Wolvertem Merchtem was looking for a trainer without a link to the club and the openness of the association made me tack. Schoten is also not that far from Wolvertem, but I like to grind some extra kilometers to a sporty interesting project”, Claessens continues from his holiday resort.

New game vision

“In the past I already worked with young players and I also find them at my new club. In the meantime I already had a conversation with all the players. So I already know them and I think I have a motivated group. Just about everyone had the feeling that there is more to be gained from this core in terms of sport. They now want to get out of that gray middle class and need a different drive. I guarantee the latter because I want to provide a new game vision. The players were all given a running program and I notice that they have all completed it in a disciplined manner. It is a challenge for me to live up to expectations now”, says the Antwerp resident.

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