When watching yesterday’s Johan Cruijff Schaal final between former champions Ajax Amsterdam and newbies PEC Zwolle, I could not help think about this year’s exciting Eredivisie campaign. When a small club like Zwolle with a budget of €9 million euros can humiliatingly defeat four-time Eredivisie champions Ajax with a budget of €65 million 1-0, it seems to give a promising insights about the distribution of chance for this year’s contender. Yes I spelled it correct, contender. Because this season will be the year of PSV Eindhoven as league title winners of the Eredivisie 2014/2015 by Lawk Raoof.
While watching the Johan Cruijff Schaal final between Ajax and PEC I was fueled with hope, excitement, relieve and comfort. PEC embarrassed Ajax today with a goal of Ex-PSV player Stef Nijland and a great assist of ‘man of the match’ Kamohelo Mokotjo. The motor and leader of PEC Zwolle. He personally removed every single existing doubt from Ajax to sign him. He was the personification of PEC Zwolle’s dominance and power today. While the Amsterdammers, deemed as many to be this year’s top-favourite contender, looked unmotivated, uninspired and playing boring football. They missed the one thing that Mokotjo had plenty of: heart and passion. However, buying him may not solve their problem.
While Ajax has experienced a huge blow in this game, it does not mean much. The Johan Cruijff Schaal is not an important prize to win for many of the top-teams such as: Ajax, PSV, Feyenoord or Twente. However, when taking into account that every team takes it seriously, it can only mean that I am right. Ajax sold Siem de Jong to Newcastle United and this will result to be a great mistake to do so. He was the leader of Ajax for many years and now there is a gap, which even recent and upcoming transfers will not fill.
While Frank de Boer’s side stutters and proves not to cope with pressure, Feyenoord sells their World Cup star-players and Twente the single most important player of previous season, PSV thrives and buys Luuk de Jong (scored the crucial goal against St. Polten) and highly likely future top-transfer Steven Defour from Porto. Not only that, the World Cup star-players: Georginio Wijnaldum, Memphis Depay and Santiago Arias return to fill the PSV squad with loads of talent and quality. It can be said that PSV has without a doubt the single most talented Dutch squad of this season and is indeed top-contender for the title. And that is not all, the technical manager Marcel Brands is set to buy/loan 3 more players to strengthen the squad.
Yes, it seems that PSV has the upper-hand this season as top-contender for the title. However, is it all good news for PSV? The answer is no. Far from it. Losing the previous six Eredivisie championships, PSV is near the brick of declining into the category of sub top teams where AZ, Heerenveen and Twente are right now. With a budget of €62million it is a shame that PSV was incapable of winning the league title. Every year there were excuses but this is the last year that PSV fans will not accept anything less than first place. I will guarantee that if losing this year’s league title, the whole board, technical director Marcel Brands, coach Philip Cocu and his colleagues will be pressured to resign. And I predict that will not be all, key-players such as Depay, Wijnaldum, Arias and more will not be able to be convinced to stay to play only in the Europa League and they will leave the club. Creating an exodus comparable with the loss PSV had in 2013/2014 when losing Kevin Strootman, Jeremain Lens and Dries Mertens.
More than ever, it seems that PSV need a league championship this season and more than ever, it seems that it is possible this season with a great team like this. However, if Cocu can’t win it this year, PSV has to officially resign there top-team status. We came far from the glory days of Guus Hiddink in 2004/2005. If PSV wants to be league favorite among Ajax and Feyenoord, they need this season’s league title. They don’t have a choice no more.
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