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Saturday, 15 June, 2002, 13:04 GMT 14:04 UK

Anthuenis enters reckoning

By John Chapman
in Brussels

Anderlecht coach Aime Anthuenis is the new favourite to replace Robert Waseige in charge of the national team after the World Cup.

Belgium FA president Jan Peeters said that Anderlecht have agreed to let their man decide whether he wants to take up the challenge.

The early favourite has been Excelsior Mouscron's Hugo Broos.

Peeters has previously said that the FA will only consider coaches who are not under contract or who have their club's permission to leave.

The appointment of Anthuenis might not be met with universal approval, however, since he has been criticised in some quarters following Anderlecht's failure to win a trophy in 2001-2002.

Bruges captain Gert Verheyen says he will stop playing for Belgium after the World Cup.

Verheyen was a key figure in Belgium's qualification in the play-offs against the Czech Republic and was widely tipped as a potential captain following Marc Wilmots' similar decision to quit.

Verheyen, 31, will win his 50th cap against Brazil and has scored 10 goals for the national team since his debut against Denmark in 1994.

Typically, Verheyen was thinking of others after the team's qualification against Russia. "I am pleased for the team and because of the pleasure it will give our fans," he said.

With both Wilmots and Verheyen retiring, there are no obvious successors as captain.

Anderlecht skipper Glen de Boeck is a possibility but he is 30 and not sure of his place in the event that Jos Valgaeren returns to the squad.

An alternative could be Bruges' Philippe Clement, but he is also not sure of winning his place back after injury.


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