2004 - 2008
In the following season the Canaries went not so well (13th place). In 2004 Marc Wilmots returned to Stayen. STVV almost got a completely new face. That turned out to be a wrong move. After the winter break, the trio took over Mangelschots-Raymaekers-Voets. STVV painfully crawled out of the relegation zone and ended in 14th place.
Herman Vermeulen was given the task of leading STVV to safer waters this season. STVV broke the Stayen ban against Racing Genk and conquered the mates from the cup of Belgium. Many other highlights were not there in the first round. STVV got out heavily at revelation Zulte Waregem (1-5), but too often left the points in the other games.
On 9 January 2006, the collaboration with trainer Herman Vermeulen came to an early end. STVV was eliminated one day before in the quarterfinals of the cup of Belgium, and was on the second last, with 18 points from 21 games. STVV closed that season in fifteenth place.
In the 2007-2008 season STVV did not manage to keep its head above water. The Canaries closed the season at seventeenth place.