KV Mechelen to pull women’s team out of Lotto Super League next season

March 5 – KV Mechelen has become the latest Belgian club to withdraw its women’s side at the end of the season from the domestic top flight, plunging the league into crisis.

The club cited the licensing requirements and a lack of financial resources as the main obstacles to its operations.

In a statement, KV Mechelen said: “After two years at the highest level, Malinwa will no longer apply for a license for the Lotto Super League for next season. The licensing conditions and framework require too great a financial effort. The focus and investments will go to the training of promising ladies and girls from the region.”

In its second season in the top flight, KV Mechelen linger in the relegation zone. Next weekend, Mechelen will play red lantern White Star Woluwe.

Last week, the Brussels-based club, the only independent women’s outfit in the league, also said it would pull out of the league on the same grounds. That will reduce the number of teams in next season’s league, as it stands, to eight clubs.

“The fact that KV Mechelen is leaving the highest division is not nice news, but it does not come as a surprise,” reacted Lorin Parys, CEO of the Pro League.

“It is not illogical that, in the context of our plan that we have worked hard on over the past year, some clubs take one step back and then take two steps forward. With this plan, we are taking our role in the development of women’s football, together with the KBVB, the regional wings and all the clubs. We will present our strategic plan for women’s football on March 29, together with our partners.”

The licensing criteria demands that each club has three players on a professional contract in the squad and facilities fit for TV broadcast.

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