This article's lead section may be too short to adequately summarize the key points. Please consider expanding the lead to provide an accessible overview of all important aspects of the article. (January 2010)
Thomas Buffel
Thomas Buffel.JPG
Buffel in training with Belgium in 2006
Personal information
Full name Thomas Buffel
Date of birth (1981-02-19) 19 February 1981 (age 41)
Place of birth Bruges, Belgium
Height 1.75 m (5 ft 9 in)
Position(s) Attacking midfielder
Club information
Current team
Belgium U21 (assistant)
Youth career
1986–1990 Daring Ruddervoorde
1990–1997 Cercle Brugge
1997–1999 Feyenoord
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1999–2005 Feyenoord 80 (35)
2000–2002Excelsior (loan) 63 (27)
2005–2008 Rangers 51 (8)
2008–2009 Cercle Brugge 35 (5)
2009–2018 Genk 235 (34)
2018–2019 Zulte Waregem 18 (4)
Total 482 (113)
National team
1995 Belgium U15 2 (0)
1995–1998 Belgium U16 12 (1)
1995–1998 Belgium U17 22 (14)
1998–1999 Belgium U18 11 (1)
2000 Belgium U19 1 (0)
2002 Belgium U21 2 (0)
2002–2013 Belgium 36 (6)
Teams managed
2019–2020 Belgium U19 (assistant)
2020– Belgium U21 (assistant)
2021 Cercle Brugge (assistant)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Thomas Buffel (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈtoːmɑz ˈbɵfəl],[1] born 19 February 1981) is a Belgian former professional footballer who played as an attacking midfielder or forward. He represented the Belgium national team at international level.

Club career

Thomas Buffel in Genk
Thomas Buffel in Genk

Early career

Buffel began his career with Belgian sides Daring Ruddervoorde and Cercle Brugge before making a move to the Netherlands.

Buffel played for the Dutch team Feyenoord in the 1999–2000 season, before moving to their feeder team Excelsior Rotterdam from 2000 to 2002. He returned to Feyenoord for the 2002–03 Eredivisie season. He reportedly fell out with then-manager Ruud Gullit in the next season "after refusing to sign a new contract".[2]

Rangers

Buffel moved to the Scottish side Rangers in January 2005 in a £2.3 million, four-and-a-half-year deal.[3] He made his debut in the Scottish Cup coming on as a substitute against Old Firm rivals Celtic in what was to be a 2–1 defeat.[4] However, the season did not end badly for him as he was to play a key role in the 2005 Scottish League Cup Final, where Rangers defeated Motherwell 5–1.[5] He also featured in the Rangers team for the latter part of the season where he would help them to their 51st league title[6] making it a double for his first season with the club. Buffel scored five goals in 18 appearances in all competitions.[7][8]

Buffel featured in the Champions League and helped Rangers reach the last 16 of the tournament, where they lost to Villarreal 3–3 on aggregate and were knocked out on away goals rule. Across all competitions, he scored seven goals in 38 appearances during the 2005–2006 season[8] mostly playing in the midfield.[citation needed]

In the 2007 January transfer window, German club Hannover 96 expressed an interest in him, with Rangers manager Walter Smith saying Buffel was free to leave. However, the deal fell through when Buffel was unable to agree personal terms with the Bundesliga side.[9] It was announced on 9 February 2007 that Buffel would undergo surgery on a long-term knee injury and would not take any further part in the 2006–07 season.[10] He returned to action on 26 September as a substitute in a Scottish League Cup tie against East Fife.[11] He would go on to make just five appearances in all competitions in his final season at Rangers.[12]

Cercle Brugge

Buffel's Rangers career came to an end when he joined former club Cercle Brugge on 1 July 2008.[13]

Genk

In the 2009 summer transfer window Buffel made a last-minute transfer to KRC Genk as part of a deal between Genk and Cercle Brugge with Jelle Vossen (on loan) and Hans Cornelis moving the opposite way.[14]

In the 2010–11 season he won the Belgian league title with Genk.[15]

His contract was not renewed at the end of the 2017–18 season.[16]

Zulte Waregem

In June 2018, it was announced Buffel would continue his career at Zulte Waregem.[16]

Buffel retired at the end of the 2018–19 season.[17]

International career

Buffel made his debut for Belgium against Andorra in October 2002 in what was to be a 1–0 victory.[18] He has since then gained 35 caps and scored 7 goals. In recent times he has been out of the picture as a player of the Belgian national football team.

Coaching career

Buffel began his coaching career in September 2019, when he was appointed assistant manager to Jacky Mathijssen at the Belgium U-19 national team.[19] In March 2020, Buffel and Mathijssen was promoted to the U-21 national team.[20]

On 3 February 2021, Buffel was also hired as an assistant manager for former club Cercle Brugge under newly appointed manager Yves Vanderhaeghe, next to his job at the national team.[21] However, on 5 October 2021, Buffel decided to leave the position, as he was going to start his Pro License course and he therefore no longer could combine his two jobs.[22]

Personal life

Buffel was married to Stephanie De Buysser, with whom he had twin sons born in November 2013. They married in June 2016, when De Buysser was already suffering from colon cancer. On 26 January 2017, De Buysser died.[23]

Career statistics

Club

Appearances and goals by club, season and competition
Club Season League Cup Continental Other Total Ref.
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Excelsior (loan) 2000–01 Eerste Divisie 31 12 31 12 [24]
2001–02 32 15 32 15 [24]
Total 63 27 0 0 0 0 0 0 63 27
Feyenoord 2002–03 Eredivisie 31 18 7 0 1[a] 0 39 18 [24]
2003–04 34 15 4 2 38 17 [24]
2004–05 15 2 6 0 21 2 [24]
Total 80 35 0 0 17 2 1 0 98 37
Rangers 2004–05 Scottish Premier League 10 1 0 0 5[b] 3 15 4 [24]
2005–06 24 4 7 1 5[c] 0 36 5 [24]
2006–07 16 3 5 1 0 0 21 4 [24]
2007–08 1 0 1 0 2 0 0 0 4 0 [24]
Total 51 8 1 0 14 2 10 3 76 13
Cercle Brugge 2008–09 Belgian First Division 30 3 30 3 [24]
2009–10 Belgian Pro League 5 2 2 5 [24]
Total 35 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 35 5
Genk 2009–10 Belgian Pro League 25 4 2 0 9[d] 3 36 7 [24][25]
2010–11 26 1 2 0 2 0 7[e] 0 37 1 [24][25]
2011–12 26 8 1 0 9 1 8[f] 0 44 9 [24][25]
2012–13 29 4 5 1 11 2 10[g] 0 55 7 [24][25]
2013–14 26 3 1 0 9 1 10[h] 3 46 7 [24][25]
2014–15 28 3 1 0 0 0 6[i] 3 35 6 [24][25]
2015–16 28 6 4 1 0 0 12[j] 3 44 10 [24][25]
2016–17 Belgian First Division A 21 2 2 0 17 4 10[k] 2 50 8 [24][25]
2017–18 26 3 6 1 0 0 9[l] 0 41 4 [24][25]
Total 235 34 24 3 48 8 81 14 388 59
Cercle Brugge 2018–19 Belgian First Division A 18 4 2 0 1 0 21 4 [24]
Career total 482 113 27 3 79 12 93 17 681 145
  1. ^ Two appearances in UEFA Super Cup
  2. ^ Five appearances, three goals in Scottish Premiership playoffs
  3. ^ Five appearances in Scottish Premiership playoffs
  4. ^ Nine appearances, three goals in Belgian Pro League playoffs
  5. ^ Seven appearances in Belgian Pro League playoffs
  6. ^ Seven appearances in Belgian Pro League playoffs, one appearance in Belgian Super Cup
  7. ^ Ten appearances in Belgian Pro League playoffs
  8. ^ Nine appearances, three goals in Belgian Pro League playoffs, one appearance in Belgian Super Cup
  9. ^ Six appearances, three goals in Belgian Pro League playoffs
  10. ^ Twelve appearances, three goals in Belgian Pro League playoffs
  11. ^ Ten appearances, two goals in Belgian First Division playoffs
  12. ^ Nine appearances in Belgian First Division playoffs

International

Scores and results list Belgium's goal tally first, score column indicates score after each Buffel goal.
List of international goals scored by Thomas Buffel
No. Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 30 April 2003 King Baudouin Stadium, Brussels, Belgium  Poland 2–0 3–1 Friendly
2 11 October 2003 Stade Maurice Dufrasne, Liège, Belgium  Estonia 2–0 2–0 Euro 2004 Qualification
3 18 August 2004 Ullevaal, Oslo, Norway  Norway 1–0 2–2 Friendly
4 2–1
5 26 March 2005 King Baudouin Stadium, Brussels, Belgium  Bosnia and Herzegovina 4–1 4–1 2006 World Cup Qualification
6 7 September 2005 Olympisch Stadion, Antwerp, Belgium  San Marino 3–0 8–0 2006 World Cup Qualification

Honours

Rangers

Genk

References

  1. ^ In isolation, Thomas is pronounced [ˈtoːmɑs].
  2. ^ "Rangers just fan-tastic". Evening Times. 6 January 2005. Archived from the original on 16 February 2005. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
  3. ^ "Rangers secure Buffel signature". BBC Sport. 5 January 2005.
  4. ^ "Celtic 2-1 Rangers". BBC Sport. 9 January 2005.
  5. ^ "Rangers 5-1 Motherwell". BBC Sport. 20 March 2005.
  6. ^ Grahame, Ewing (23 May 2005). "Novo has Rangers in a party mood". The Telegraph. Retrieved 5 December 2015.
  7. ^ "Games played by Thomas Buffel in 2004/2005". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 5 December 2015.
  8. ^ a b "Rangers Player Thomas Buffel Details". fitbastats.com. Retrieved 5 December 2015.
  9. ^ "Buffel Bundesliga move collapses". BBC Sport. 31 January 2007.
  10. ^ "Buffel's season ended by injury". BBC Sport. 9 February 2007. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
  11. ^ "East Fife 0-4 Rangers". BBC. 26 September 2007. Retrieved 18 October 2020.
  12. ^ "Games played by Thomas Buffel in 2007/2008". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 18 October 2020.
  13. ^ "Buffel exits Rangers for Cercle". BBC Sport. 1 July 2008. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
  14. ^ "Buffel naar Genk, Vossen en Cornelis naar Cercle" [Buffel to Genk, Vossen and Cornelis to Cercle]. De Morgen (in Dutch). 1 September 2009. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
  15. ^ Scholten, Berend (17 May 2011). "Genk pip Standard to Belgian title". UEFA. Retrieved 5 December 2015.
  16. ^ a b "Thomas Buffel trekt naar Zulte Waregem". KW (in Dutch). Knack. 24 June 2018. Retrieved 19 July 2018.
  17. ^ Afscheid van Thomas Buffel zal hem nog lang heugen: compleet bestickerde auto, bloem en rode haarkleur, gva.be, 16 May 2019
  18. ^ "Andorra 0-1 Belgium". UEFA.com. 12 October 2002.
  19. ^ Thomas Buffel nouvel adjoint de l'équipe nationale U19, sportmagazine.levif.be, 9 September 2019
  20. ^ JACKY MATHIJSSEN, NOUVEL ENTRAÎNEUR FÉDÉRAL DES U21, rbfa.be, 14 March 2020
  21. ^ Officieel: Yves Vanderhaeghe is de nieuwe trainer van Cercle Brugge, Thomas Buffel wordt assistent, voetbalkrant.com, 3 February 2020
  22. ^ Cercle Brugge neemt afscheid van assistent-coach Thomas Buffel, sporza.be, 5 October 2021
  23. ^ Stevens, Guy. "Vrouw van Thomas Buffel verliest strijd tegen darmkanker".
  24. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u "Thomas Buffel » Club matches". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 19 July 2018.
  25. ^ a b c d e f g h i "T. Buffel". Soccerway. Retrieved 19 July 2018.