WEEK 4 – Friday 23rd August 2013
Ajax have stumbled again in the defence of their Eredivisie thriller in Friday night’s six goal thriller against Marco van Basten’s Heerenveen.
HEERENVEEN 3-3 AJAX
Frank de Boer will be worried about his side’s shocking defensive frailties as Heerenveen overturned a two-goal deficit to hold Ajax to a 3-3 draw in an exhilarating encounter inside the Abe Lenstra Stadion.
Missing left-back Daley Blind, De Boer was forced to play young Danish defender Nicolas Boilesen as Belgian centre-back Toby Alderweireld passed a late fitness test after suffering a perforated ear drum in the 2-1 win over Feyenoord last Sunday.
Two goalkeeping howlers by Heerenveen’s Swedish stopper Kristoffer Nordfeldt handed Ajax a two goal lead, and both goals were headers from Christian Eriksen corners. The opening goal came as Ajax defender Niklas Moisander rose above everyone at the back post to head down through Nordfeldt’s legs.
Four minutes later, it was two. Icelandic striker Kolbeinn Sigþórsson, also at the far post, rising above the failing Nordfeldt to make it 2-0. However, Van Basten’s side pulled the game back to lead 3-2 at the half-time whistle.
The Eredivisie ‘Golden Boot’ leader Alfred Finnbogason was once again on the scoresheet, nabbing a brace before the break. The Iceland international sprung the offside trap to latch onto Hakim Ziyech’s through-ball and fire past Kenneth Vermeer, before the same combination brought the equaliser when Finnbogason latched onto the Ziyech’s lofted pass and coolly slotted under the goalkeeper.
The turnaround was complete shortly before the internal when Norwegian midfielder Magnus Wolff Eikrem side-footed an effort from the edge of the box past the stunned Vermeer.
The champions Ajax showed their own fighting spirit when Christian Eriksen completed a fine individual performance with a well-placed finish from 25-yards on 66 minutes.
The 3-3 draw leaves both sides neck and neck with Ajax just ahead of Heerenveen in fourth, with the hosts sitting fifth due on goal difference.
REMAINDER OF WEEK 4 FIXTURES
SATURDAY 24TH AUGUST
NEC vs. RKC WAALWIJK
HERACLES vs. PSV
ADO DEN HAAG vs. RODA JC
PEC ZWOLLE vs. SC CAMBUUR
SUNDAY 25TH AUGUST
GO AHEAD EAGLES vs. FC GRONINGEN
FEYENOORD vs. NAC BREDA
VITESSE ARNHEM vs. FC TWENTE
FC UTRECHT vs. AZ ALKMAAR
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