2011–12 in Belgian football

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The 2011–12 football season in Belgium, which is the 109th season of competitive football in the country and runs from July 2011 until June 2012.

National team football[edit]

Men's national football team[edit]

The Belgium national football team started the 2011–12 season knowing they were still undefeated in 2011, but also knowing that they needed to make up for earlier mistakes during the UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying campaign. With Germany topping the qualifying group with the maximum amount of points after 7 matches, the battle for second place and the resulting play-offs place was between Belgium and Turkey. Turkey was one point down, but had a game in hand.

On September 2, all looked fine for the Belgians until the last few minutes, as Rauf Aliyev scored the equalizer for Azerbaijan against Belgium in Baku, while on the same day, Turkey scored a 96th minute winner against Kazakhstan. Turkey now lead Belgium by one point and had a game in hand. Four days later, Belgium partially recovered mentally by beating USA in a friendly, while Turkey dropped points away to Austria, only drawing 0-0.

Turkey lost second place again as they were beaten 1-3 at home to Germany while Belgium successfully put Kazakhstan away 4-1. On the last matchday however, Belgium needed to match the result of Turkey and while Turkey hosted Azerbaijan, Belgium played an away game in Germany, who had won all their matches so far. The miracle did not happen for Belgium as they lost 3-1 and Turkey won 1-0, causing Belgium to miss out on yet another major tournament, still waiting for one since the 2002 FIFA World Cup. The general feeling in Belgium was one of a missed chance, as the Belgian team had shown promising football throughout the campaign, but often were not able to get or hold on to a needed result. Too many mistakes were made during the campaign, with many citing the 4-4 home draw vs Austria, the 1-1 home draw vs Turkey and the 1-1 away draw to Azerbaijan which all should have been won. Coach Georges Leekens was however not blamed, as his goal was set to qualify for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

After the unsuccessful UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying campaign, Belgium continued with a series of friendlies to bridge the gap until the start of the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualification matches in September 2012. In November Belgium overpowered Romania in a friendly in Liège but only won 2-1, before drawing 0-0 with France in Paris. In February a mediocre match in and against Greece resulted in a 1-1 draw.

On 13 May, the Belgian soccer fans were shocked as head coach Georges Leekens decided to quit his position and become the head coach at Club Brugge. Assistant coach Marc Wilmots was persuaded to take over the position as caretaker, while the Belgian FA looked for a new candidate. Wilmots led the team in a 2-2 friendly draw at home against Montenegro and a 1-0 loss against England at Wembley Stadium. In the week following these matches, Wilmots was appointed as the head coach of the national team.

UEFA Euro 2012 qualification[edit]

Friendlies[edit]

Women's national football team[edit]

Euro 2013 qualifying[edit]

Men's national under-21 team[edit]

Friendly match[edit]

U-21 Championship qualifiers[edit]

The Belgium under-21 squad is currently in Group 8 of the qualification process for the 2013 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship.

This leaves two matches, home to Norway and home to Iceland to be played in the next season.

Promotion and relegation[edit]

Team promoted to 2011–12 Belgian Pro League

Teams relegated from 2010–11 Belgian Pro League

Teams promoted to 2011–12 Belgian Second Division

Teams relegated from 2010-11 Belgian Second Division


League competitions[edit]

Belgian First Division[edit]

Belgian Second Division[edit]


European Club results[edit]

Genk and Standard Liège participated in the qualifying rounds of the Champions League, while Westerlo, Club Brugge and Anderlecht started respectively in the second qualifying round, third qualifying round and playoff round of the Europa League.

  • Partizan Belgrade twice took the lead against Genk in the Third qualifying round, but Genk managed to overcome the deficit with a 2-1 victory at home and a 1-1 draw in Belgrade. After a 2-1 loss in Haifa and a 2-1 win in Genk, Genk needed penalty kicks to get past Maccabi Haifa in the Play-off round. Genk was drawn together with Bayer Leverkusen, Chelsea and Valencia and started with a promising 0-0 home draw against Valencia, followed by a 2-0 loss away to Leverkusen. After a 5-0 loss in London, supporters feared the worst when Chelsea came to play in Genk, but surprisingly, Chelsea was held to a 1-1 draw. Hopes were shattered on the next match day however, as Valencia humiliated Genk with a 7-0 victory, thereby eliminating Genk from European football with still one matchday to go. In the final match against already qualified Leverkusen, Genk maintained their unbeaten status at home, drawing for the third time.
  • Unlike Genk, Standard was not able to qualify for the Group Stage of the Champions League, as they lost out 2-1 on aggregate to Zürich, thereby dropping into the Play-off round of the UEFA Europa League where they were paired with Helsingborgs. After both a home and an away win, Standard moved on to Group B of the Group Stage were they were coupled with Copenhagen, Hannover and Vorskla Poltava. After 3 wins and 2 draws, Standard qualified for the knockout phase and was sure of winning the group with still one match to go. In the knockout stages, Standard first beat Wisła Kraków on the away goals rule after drawing twice, before being paired again with Hannover 96 in the round of 16. Although Standard kept Hannover to a 2-2 draw at home, they were well beaten 4-0 in the return leg in Germany.
  • Westerlo qualified for the third qualifying round of the Europa League by putting aside TPS Turku, where they lost out 5-1 on aggregate to Young Boys Bern.
  • Starting in the third qualifying round of the Europa League, Club Brugge needed to get past two opponents to qualify for the Group Stage. Club Brugge was twice given an unattractive draw in a far away region, as they first beat Qarabağ from Azerbaijan before eliminating Zestafoni from Georgia. Twice they secured the qualification at home and had trouble in their away match, losing 1-0 in Baku and only drawing 3-3 in Tbilisi. In the Group Stage, both Maribor (at home) and Braga (away) were beaten in the first two matches, before Club Brugge lost out 1-2 at home to Birmingham City, due to a 90+9th minute winner from Chris Wood. After a 2-2 draw in Birmingham and the 'miracle of Maribor' (3-4 win in Maribor when they were 3-0 down after 70 minutes), Club Brugge needed only a draw in their final home match against Braga to qualificaty as group winners. In the knockout stages, they were eliminated by Hannover 96, after losing both legs.
  • Anderlecht qualified relatively easily for the Group Stage of the Europa League after eliminating Bursaspor 4-3 on aggregate, but their engine only started running properly during the group stage, where they scored a perfect 6 out of 6 victories. After putting away AEK Athens 4-1 at home, they stole the points away to Lokomotiv Moscow winning 0-2. Then followed two wins against Sturm Graz, resulting in an early qualification already after four matchdays. In the last two matches, Anderlecht won away to AEK Athens and managed to finish the group with the maximum amount of points after a final 5-3 home win against Lokomotiv Moscow. However, Anderlecht were then paired with AZ and lost both legs 1-0 in the round of 32. During the group stage, Anderlecht had equalled three records:
Date Team Competition Round Leg Opponent Location Score Belgian Team Goalscorers
14 July 2011 Westerlo Europa League Qual. Round 2 Leg 1, Away Finland TPS Turku Veritas Stadion, Turku 0-1 Cabeke
21 July 2011 Westerlo Europa League Qual. Round 2 Leg 2, Home Finland TPS Turku Het Kuipje, Westerlo 0-0
26 July 2011 Genk Champions League Qual. Round 3 Leg 1, Home Serbia Partizan Belgrade Cristal Arena, Genk 2-1 Vossen, Ogunjimi
27 July 2011 Standard Liège Champions League Qual. Round 3 Leg 1, Home Switzerland Zürich Stade Maurice Dufrasne, Liège 1-1 González
28 July 2011 Club Brugge Europa League Qual. Round 3 Leg 1, Home Azerbaijan Qarabağ Jan Breydel Stadium, Bruges 4-1 Vleminckx, Vázquez, Donk, Dirar
28 July 2011 Westerlo Europa League Qual. Round 3 Leg 1, Away Switzerland Young Boys Stade de Suisse, Bern 3-1 Brüls
3 August 2011 Genk Champions League Qual. Round 3 Leg 2, Away Serbia Partizan Belgrade Stadion FK Partizan, Belgrade 1-1 Vossen
3 August 2011 Standard Liège Champions League Qual. Round 3 Leg 2, Away Switzerland Zürich Letzigrund, Zurich 1-0
4 August 2011 Club Brugge Europa League Qual. Round 3 Leg 2, Away Azerbaijan Qarabağ Tofiq Bahramov Stadium, Baku 1-0
4 August 2011 Westerlo Europa League Qual. Round 3 Leg 2, Home Switzerland Young Boys Het Kuipje, Westerlo 0-2
17 August 2011 Genk Champions League Playoff Round Leg 1, Away Israel Maccabi Haifa Kiryat Eliezer Stadium, Haifa 2-1 Barda
18 August 2011 Anderlecht Europa League Play-off Round Leg 1, Away Turkey Bursaspor Bursa Atatürk Stadium, Bursa 1-2 Legear, Jovanović
18 August 2011 Club Brugge Europa League Play-off Round Leg 1, Away Georgia (country) Zestafoni David Abashidze Stadium, Zestafoni 3-3 Akpala, Refaelov, Hoefkens
18 August 2011 Standard Liège Europa League Play-off Round Leg 1, Home Sweden Helsingborg Stade Maurice Dufrasne, Liège 1-0 Tchité
23 August 2011 Genk Champions League Playoff Round Leg 2, Home Israel Maccabi Haifa Cristal Arena, Genk 2-1 (aet)
(pen 4–1)
Vossen, Buffel
25 August 2011 Anderlecht Europa League Play-off Round Leg 2, Home Turkey Bursaspor Constant Vanden Stock Stadium, Anderlecht 2-2 Juhász, Jovanović
25 August 2011 Club Brugge Europa League Play-off Round Leg 2, Home Georgia (country) Zestafoni Jan Breydel Stadium, Bruges 2-0 Akpala (2)
25 August 2011 Standard Liège Europa League Play-off Round Leg 2, Away Sweden Helsingborg Olympia, Helsingborg 1-3 Leye, Berrier, Kanu
13 September 2011 Genk Champions League Group Stage Matchday 1, Home Spain Valencia Cristal Arena, Genk 0-0
15 September 2011 Anderlecht Europa League Group Stage Matchday 1, Home Greece AEK Athens Constant Vanden Stock Stadium, Anderlecht 4-1 Suárez (3), Jovanović
15 September 2011 Club Brugge Europa League Group Stage Matchday 1, Home Slovenia Maribor Jan Breydel Stadium, Bruges 2-0 Odjidja, Dirar
15 September 2011 Standard Liège Europa League Group Stage Matchday 1, Away Germany Hannover 96 AWD-Arena, Hanover 0-0
28 September 2011 Genk Champions League Group Stage Matchday 2, Away Germany Bayer Leverkusen BayArena, Leverkusen 2-0
29 September 2011 Anderlecht Europa League Group Stage Matchday 2, Away Russia Lokomotiv Moscow Lokomotiv Stadium, Moscow 0-2 Suárez, Mbokani
29 September 2011 Club Brugge Europa League Group Stage Matchday 2, Away Portugal Braga Estádio Municipal, Braga 1-2 Akpala, Donk
29 September 2011 Standard Liège Europa League Group Stage Matchday 2, Home Denmark Copenhagen Stade Maurice Dufrasne, Liège 3-0 Seijas, Felipe, Kanu
19 October 2011 Genk Champions League Group Stage Matchday 3, Away England Chelsea Stamford Bridge, London 5-0
20 October 2011 Anderlecht Europa League Group Stage Matchday 3, Away Austria Sturm Graz UPC-Arena, Graz 0-2 Gillet, Suárez
20 October 2011 Club Brugge Europa League Group Stage Matchday 3, Home England Birmingham City Jan Breydel Stadium, Bruges 1-2 Akpala
20 October 2011 Standard Liège Europa League Group Stage Matchday 3, Home Ukraine Vorskla Poltava Stade Maurice Dufrasne, Liège 0-0
1 November 2011 Genk Champions League Group Stage Matchday 4, Home England Chelsea Cristal Arena, Genk 1-1 Vossen
3 November 2011 Club Brugge Europa League Group Stage Matchday 4, Away England Birmingham City St Andrew's, Birmingham 2-2 Meunier, Akpala
3 November 2011 Anderlecht Europa League Group Stage Matchday 4, Home Austria Sturm Graz Constant Vanden Stock Stadium, Anderlecht 3-0 Gillet, Suárez, De Sutter
3 November 2011 Standard Liège Europa League Group Stage Matchday 4, Away Ukraine Vorskla Poltava Butovsky Vorskla Stadium, Poltava 1-3 Seijas, Kanu, Tchité
23 November 2011 Genk Champions League Group Stage Matchday 5, Away Spain Valencia Estadio Mestalla, Valencia 7-0
30 November 2011 Club Brugge Europa League Group Stage Matchday 5, Away Slovenia Maribor Ljudski vrt, Maribor 3-4 Dirar (2), Akpala, Donk
30 November 2011 Standard Liège Europa League Group Stage Matchday 5, Home Germany Hannover 96 Stade Maurice Dufrasne, Liège 2-0 Tchité, Cyriac
1 December 2011 Anderlecht Europa League Group Stage Matchday 5, Away Greece AEK Athens Olympic Stadium, Athens 1-2 Gillet (2)
6 December 2011 Genk Champions League Group Stage Matchday 6, Home Germany Bayer Leverkusen Cristal Arena, Genk 1-1 Vossen
14 December 2011 Anderlecht Europa League Group Stage Matchday 6, Home Russia Lokomotiv Moscow Constant Vanden Stock Stadium, Anderlecht 5-3 Kljestan, Canesin, Wasilewski, Suárez, Gillet
15 December 2011 Club Brugge Europa League Group Stage Matchday 6, Home Portugal Braga Jan Breydel Stadium, Bruges 1-1 Vleminckx
15 December 2011 Standard Liège Europa League Group Stage Matchday 6, Away Denmark Copenhagen Parken Stadium, Copenhagen 0-1 Batshuayi
16 February 2012 Anderlecht Europa League Round of 32 Leg 1, Away Netherlands AZ AFAS Stadion, Alkmaar 1-0
16 February 2012 Club Brugge Europa League Round of 32 Leg 1, Away Germany Hannover 96 AWD-Arena, Hannover 2-1 Lestienne
16 February 2012 Standard Liège Europa League Round of 32 Leg 1, Away Poland Wisła Kraków Stadion im. Henryka Reymana 1-1 Cyriac
23 February 2012 Anderlecht Europa League Round of 32 Leg 2, Home Netherlands AZ Constant Vanden Stock Stadium, Anderlecht 0-1
23 February 2012 Club Brugge Europa League Round of 32 Leg 2, Home Germany Hannover 96 Jan Breydel Stadium, Bruges 0-1
23 February 2012 Standard Liège Europa League Round of 32 Leg 2, Home Poland Wisła Kraków Stade Maurice Dufrasne, Liège 0-0
8 March 2012 Standard Liège Europa League Round of 16 Leg 1, Home Germany Hannover 96 Stade Maurice Dufrasne, Liège 2-2 Buyens, Tchité
15 March 2012 Standard Liège Europa League Round of 16 Leg 2, Away Germany Hannover 96 AWD-Arena, Hanover 4-0

Other honours[edit]

Competition Winner
Cup Lokeren
Supercup
Third division A Mouscron-Péruwelz
Third division B Dessel Sport
Promotion A Izegem
Promotion B Berchem
Promotion C Cappellen
Promotion D Ciney

European qualification for 2012-13 summary[edit]

Competition Qualifiers Reason for Qualification
UEFA Champions League Third Qualifying Round for Champions Anderlecht 1st in Jupiler League
UEFA Champions League Third Qualifying Round for Non-Champions Club Brugge 2nd in Jupiler League
UEFA Europa League Play-off Round Lokeren Cup winner
UEFA Europa League Third Qualifying Round Genk 3rd in Jupiler League
UEFA Europa League Second Qualifying Round Gent Europa League Playoff winner

See also[edit]

References[edit]