People tend to always ask me: ‘Why Club Brugge?’ A pretty obvious question actually for a Club Brugge fan who lives in the province of Antwerpen.
I think it’s the same for many fans, you need to go back to your childhood. For me it started when I was 9 years old. At first I did grow an interest for the colors. When I saw the weekly football reports on television, suddenly I saw a team with blue and black stripes, which immediately caught my attention. The vintage Assubel logo on the chest did the rest, what an amazing shirt I was thinking.
After that you start to follow that team with the great shirts a bit more, so I discovered they didn’t always play with the black and blue stripes but sometimes also with all blue shirts and black shorts, which was also pretty appealing to me.
You start to learn who the players are and that’s the next step in the process. You start identifying yourself with certain players. I always had a weak spot for strikers, so for me the powerfull partnership Frank Farina-Foeke Booy did the trick, supported by local giants like Ceulemans, Borkelmans, Beyens, Van der Elst etc.
But to become a real fan you should taste the atmosphere of the stadium of course, which I hadn’t until then. But hey..I was only 9 years old and living more than 100 kms from Brugge. Luckily enough I had some supportive parents, who –unless their busy schedule – allowed me the chance to see my hero’s from television live in the Olympia Stadium. I still remember it was a sunny afternoon when we played Lierse at home. We won 2-0 and the atmosphere was just impressive for a little boy like me. As a small kid you tend to support the team who is winning championships and cups, but after that afternoon against Lierse I was sure, Club Brugge it would be.
That feeling only grew stronger after I started learning and reading about the culture and the history of the Club. A history with a lot of glory and passion. Big moments which I have never experienced because I simply wasn’t born yet, but even then these moments should be cherished by every Club Brugge fan.
Since then I kept on visiting the Olympia Stadium, now called Jan Breydel Stadium, for already more than twenty years. I celebrated titles and cups, saw big European teams be eliminated in Brugge. Of course there were also moments the results didn't come that easily but such moments only made me enjoy the big triumphs even more.
Like every fan and collector I was buying the new replica every year during my youth. At that time I didn't even realize there was a big market in player shirts. I thought you had to be very lucky to receive some directly form a player. A few years ago however, I was browsing the internet and suddenly my eye fell on a match worn Club Brugge shirt, worn by Norwegian striker Rune Lange. I decided to buy it. A couple of months later I already had a few of these so called match worn shirts. I think that must be the point in time that I decided to try to collect them all.
Now a few years further I decided to share my collection through the internet so I started building this website, which is meant as a tribute to the most beautiful club on earth, it's glorious history and these amazing blue and black stripes.
I want to grab this opportunity to say thanks to all people I have been trading shirts with through the years, especially some big collectors like Geert and Nicholas who helped me a lot with some amazing shirts. A special thanks also to Gijs who has been very helpful with the website. I also want to thank my parents who have always been very supportive regarding my football madness even though it must have turned them crazy more than once in the past.
Last but not least I want to thank my lovely wife, An, who gives me beside all the love and care in the world also the time and space to exploit this fantastic hobby.