Football: The Sweeper - They're not all Dennis Bergkamp

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The Independent Online
Unsung foreign legionnaires No 37

WIM WALSCHAERTS: The 26-year-old Belgian midfielder was playing part- time football for KFC Tielen in his home country when he was spotted by the Leyton Orient manager, Tommy Taylor, last summer. Taylor used to play in Belgium and still maintains contacts there. Having seen Wim play, he signed the painter and decorator for the Os for nothing on a Bosman. Wim, who's scored five times in 50 appearances - including one in the 6-1 win over Shrewsbury last week - has just signed an extension to his contract to keep him at the club until 2001. "He's the only Belgian I know who's learnt Cockney," Frank Woolf, Leyton's club secretary said of Wim's command of the language, especially rhyming slang. "He's got a great engine, he's a good passer of ball and he's great for team spirit," added Woolf. The player has not lacked support since his move to London, as his family travel from Belgium for every home game.