Due to the international break, the ninth round of action in the Dutch top flight got underway on Saturday evening with two fixtures kicking off simultaneously that saw reigning Eredivisie champions, PSV Eindhoven tune up for their UEFA Champions League encounter with Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday evening by hitting a hapless FC Emmen for six to move eight points clear at the top of the standings ahead of the rest of the weekend’s fixtures while, at the same time, goals from Jeffry Fortes and Jurgen Mattheij saw an undermanned Excelsior edge out Vitesse Arnhem at the Van Donge & De Roo Stadion.
Saturday’s Eredivisie action was concluded with two more fixtures that saw title-chasing Ajax, who themselves welcome Benfica to the Johan Cruijff ArenA in UEFA Champions League action on Tuesday evening, promptly reduce PSV’s advantage at the top of the table back to five points after Erik ten Hag’s men hit Heerenveen for four without reply in Friesland while an own goal from the unlucky Ricardo van Rhijn saw FC Utrecht snatch all three points from under the noses of visiting AZ Alkmaar at the Stadion Galgenwaard.
Sunday’s action in the top flight of Dutch football got underway in Breda where a Mikhail Rosheuvel spot kick sixteen minutes from time ultimately proved enough to earn bottom-of-the-table, NAC a share of the spoils from their derby clash with Willem II.
Elsewhere, goals from Peniel Mlapa and Jay-Roy Grot saw VVV Venlo sweep aside the challenge of visiting ADO Den Haag to edge their way into the top five.
Meanwhile, Heracles ended the weekend five points and one place better off than VVV after coming from a goal down to hit struggling FC Groningen for four at the Polman Stadion while, with the season’s first instalment of De Klassieker on the horizon, Feyenoord hit PEC Zwolle for three to move within two points of second placed Ajax.
The ninth round of Eredivisie action was brought to a close in Sittard where Fortuna hit fellow newly-promoted side, De Graafschap for three to move three points clear of the drop zone.
PSV Eindhoven 6-0 FC Emmen
Excelsior 2-0 Vitesse Arnhem
SC Heerenveen 0-4 AFC Ajax
FC Utrecht 2-1 AZ Alkmaar
NAC Breda 2-2 Willem II
VVV Venlo 2-0 ADO Den Haag
Heracles Almelo 4-1 FC Groningen
Feyenoord 3-0 PEC Zwolle
Fortuna Sittard 3-1 De Graafschap
Team of the Week
GK – Justin Bijlow – Feyenoord
DF – Denzel Dumfries – PSV
DF – Angelino – PSV
DF – Branislav Ninaj – Fortuna Sittard
DF – Jurgen Mattheij – Excelsior
MF – Tino Susic – VVV
MF – Gaston Pereiro – PSV
MF – Hakim Ziyech – Ajax
FW – Luuk De Jong – PSV
FW – Lazaros Lamprou – Fortuna Sittard
FW – Hirving Lozano – PSV
Player of the Week
FW – Hirving Lozano – PSV
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