Finishing a respectable 12th place in the Eredivisie last season after gaining promotion from the Eerste Divisie the season before, Cambuur will look to build on that position this season, can they do it? Will Burns thinks not.
Although, almost unbeatable at home and undefeated in pre-season (a string of six wins on the bounce scoring a total of 33 goals) I fear the wheels may come off this year for Henk de Jong. Simply enough, I do not think that the Leeuwarden side’s squad is of adequate strength to reach any higher this year.
Last year, on-loan stars Marcel Ritzmaier (PSV) and Jody Lukoki (Ajax) stole the show at Cambuur with their performances, so much so, that their clubs are refusing to loan them out this year. De Jong will have to heavily rely on the goals of Nigerian forward Bartholomew Ogbeche, Michiel Hemmen and Martijn Barto this coming campaign. Relegation specialist striker Daniël de Ridder arrived on a free from RKC Waalwijk to help notch the goals.
For creating chances, Serbian midfielder Dejan Meleg has been loaned off Ajax. Cambuur fans will be hoping he can make the same impact that Amsterdam team-mate Lukoki did last term. However, the main reason I worry for De Jong’s side is their defence. Centre-back pairing Martijn van der Laan and Ramon Leeuwin have been sold on after an impressive first season together and have not really been sufficiently replaced. Etiënne Reijnen has been recruited from AZ who is a worthy replacement, but no-one experienced to partner him.
I think they will have a tough season but eventually steer themselves out of relegation trouble and finishing well above the places.
TRANSFERS INS AND OUT
IN: Albert Rusnak (Manchester City), Berent Schootstra (Heerenveen), Calvin Mac-Intosch (Telstar), Daniel de Ridder (RKC Waalwijk), Dejan Meleg (Ajax), Etienne Reijnen (AZ Alkmaar), Furdjel Narsingh (PEC Zwolle), Jurjan Wouda (RKC Waalwijk), Ron Janzen (FC Groningen), Sander van de Streek (Vitesse).
OUT: Elvis Manu (Feyenoord), Marcel Ritzmaier (PSV), Martijn van der Laan (FC Groningen), Oliver Feldballe (Sarpsborg 08 FF), Ramon Leeuwin (FC Utrecht), Tim Coremans (ADO Den Haag).
MANAGER – HENK DE JONG
De Jong led Cambuur to their best ever finish in the Eredivisie after Dwight Lodeweges took off for Heerenveen last March, the Leeuwarden fans will be hoping of more of the same.
KEY PLAYER – BARTHOLOMEW OGBECHE
Bought by Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain as a youth, the Nigerian striker has vast experience all over the world, scoring goals at every club. Ogbeche even had a spell in the Championship with Middlesbrough in 2011/12, scoring ten goals in 24 appearances. Should he get the support he could win games for Cambuur.
PREDICTION – 13TH
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