Hockey: can Racing still reverse the trend?

3weeks ago when the reigning Belgian champions won the first European bronze medal in their history, in the Netherlands, no one would have imagined that they would find themselves in such a situation when it came to the final stretch of the linear competition. Currently stuck in 5th place in the hierarchy, 4 units behind the Waterloo Ducks, Xavier De Greve’s protégés are struggling after signing a catastrophic 1/9 during the month of April, in the league. A slap at home against the Dragons, a heavy defeat at the Ghent and a sluggish sharing against the Daring will they precipitate the fall of the Ucclois who already no longer have the right to make mistakes? There are still 3 games to play and, above all, an already decisive duel against the Watducks on Sunday afternoon. “We’ve talked a lot since we came back from EHL to try to identify what’s missing,” said captain Jérôme Truyens, back on the field after his hamstring problems. “It’s a boat to say but we will have to take it game by game and achieve especially a 9 out of 9. And that won’t even guarantee us our place in the last square yet. But we have to play everything to the fullest so as not to feel the slightest regret. »

Racing will already have to pass the pitfall of this double weekend (with a match, Sunday, and a second, Monday, against Leopold, current leader of the hierarchy) to continue to dream of a participation in the playoffs. An unprecedented situation given the intrinsic qualities of this group that reproduced, in a way, an identical pattern to last season even if it had finally ended with fanfare with the conquest of a coveted title for 81 years. “It’s no secret, we lacked a lot of consistency at all levels in the group during these first 19 days,” continues the former captain of the Red Lions who plays his 20th season in the Division of Honor in the jersey of the club. “And unfortunately, we haven’t been able to correct that yet. There was a huge focus during EHL and everyone managed to raise their level. I cannot let it be said that there has been a lack of work in recent months. Maybe we haven’t questioned ourselves enough. We were certainly too naïve after the European parenthesis. In Ghent, for example, we were far too focused on refereeing. And our adversaries asphyxiated us. And again, we all sank together. This shipwreck is in no way linked to a single person. »

A lack of desire and combativeness

But no more question of gamberger for the group who obviously did not expect to live such a season even if the confirmation is always delicate for an outgoing champion. Racing must sign a flawless hoping that the Waterloo Ducks is limited to a 5 out of 9 (against Racing, Old Club and Leopold). “Last season, we came back from nowhere by ensuring our qualification for the last four on the final day,” concludes the 35-year-old from Brussels who confirmed that he will still wear the black and white jersey for another year. “We had a lot of setbacks that finally helped us outdo ourselves in the final. We could therefore imagine experiencing the same scenario. But will it be a tragedy if we fail at the foot of the top 4? No. A failure either since we achieved one of our 2 objectives which was a podium in EHL. But the result will indeed be disappointing if we do not participate in the playoffs. However, before thinking about the possible consequences, we must finish the competition on a high note. We have lacked the sneak and combativeness these last 2 weeks. It will therefore be necessary to be welded against the Wat’ and the Leo. That is what has been wrong for several weeks. There are no technical or tactical problems in this team. »

Le Soir

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