Belgian top tier clubs all pass club licensing criteria but second tier teams have difficulties

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April 23 – All Belgian top flight clubs have been issued a license for the 2024-25 season by the Belgian FA (RBFA) but in the second division KV Oostende, Patro Eisden and Francs Borains all failed to be meet the licensing criteria.

Reigning Belgian champions Antwerp were slapped with a €50,000 fine because the club does not have a women’s team, an infringement of European requirements, but all other 1A clubs were given the green light.

The RBFA said KRC Genk, Club Brugge, AA Gent and Union won’t require any monitoring as those clubs have demonstrated sound financial management. In the 2022-23 season, Belgium’s professional clubs registered a combined record loss of €193 million.

In 1B, the second division that includes U-23 teams of top flight clubs, KV Oostende, Patro Eisden and Francs Borains all three failed to receive a license and will be slapped with a three-point deduction next season.

The license commission ruled that KV Oostende is still carrying too much debt, Francs Borains failed to provide all required documents and Patro Eisden’s application ‘lacked substance’.

Owned by majority investor Oostende Investment Company, which includes shareholders Randy Frankel, Chien Lee and Paul Conway, Oostende went into temporary financial administration in January to prevent more money and assets from exiting the club. Conway, who controls Pacific Media Group, has a 13% share in the club, but his status as a director remains unclear.

The three second-division clubs will likely appeal the decision.

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