On Sunday, RSCA will take on neighbours Union Saint-Gilloise in our first game of 2023. Coach Brian Riemer is looking forward to his first game at home, in a nearly sold out Lotto Park. The coach addressed the press on Friday afternoon.
Coach Riemer started off with an update regarding recent injuries. “We lost Hannes, unfortunately, after an injury in training this week. He will not be available for the upcoming weeks. Zeno Debast is progressing well. We still need to do the final tests and his first full training is on Saturday. He’s still in play for the game against Union, but there’s still a few boxes that need to be ticked. Sebastiano Esposito is not match fit due to injury.”
The coach acknowledges that, at the moment, he doesn’t have too many options in defense. “But I think we have a lot of young, good players here in Anderlecht that have been progressing really well. They’re waiting for their opportunity. We have different options, depending on how we want to structure the team. If Zeno is not playing, we need to look at the defending but also at how we want to build up. That aspect could have its influence on the decision about who to play in this game. We’ve used Diawara there before, we know that Sardella can play as a centre back, we have Sadiki who can play in that position, so we have different options.”
The coach got asked about the current transfer window as well, especially about strengthening the attack. “Like every club, we’ll be looking to strengthen the squad. I know that the management and our brilliant scouting department are working hard to find the right solutions. But as well in defense as in attack, there are always options. Aside from Fábio Silva, Benito Raman can play as a striker, Mario Stroeykens has done really well for us and can play as a striker as well. For me, it’s also about how to structure the team in the best possible way. Like I’ve said before, we have a lot of quality in this squad. A lot of unfulfilled quality and talent. One of the things we love to do in Anderlecht is to make that talent flourish. In that aspect, I have a strong belief that Fábio has the potential to become an even more important player for us.”
Coach Riemer will be looking to put an end to the series of bad results against Union. “I think everyone at Anderlecht knows how important this game is for our supporters. Obviously, a derby is never up for discussion. It’s extra special for me and for the players, as it’s the first game at the Lotto Park since our restart, where Jesper Fredberg and I came in. I’m looking forward to it so much, to go out and show who we are in front of a full stadium. I’ve heard a lot of great things about the atmosphere, about how incredible the home supporters are. And I know for a fact that for us to gain success, not only on Sunday but also on the long term, the supporters will be a massive part of that.”
“So I think for us, it’s more about coming out and showing our supporters who we are and what we can do. Being Anderlecht, it’s always a better idea to focus on ourselves and who we are, rather than focus too much on the opposition.”