The Eredivisie season restarts after the winter break on Friday night, so as a preview, we have decided to rundown the stars of the division so far this season.
Here’s Will Burns with the next five…
Feyenoord must be ruing the day they let Mr. Leerdam join Vitesse Arnhem on a free transfer in the summer. Although, the Rotterdam side have a fantastic right-back in Daryl Janmaat, he does not have the goalscoring prowess of Kelvin Leerdam.
From sixteen appearances this season, 14 games at right-back, Leerdam has notched up seven goals, including three goals in that last four games. Not bad for a free transfer.
A true attacking full-back, Leerdam is a confident dribbler and at times acting as a supplementary right-winger. The 23-year-old has continued to be dependable defending too. He has made 36 tackles, 23 interceptions and 58 clearances so far this campaign.
The Italian hitman is a bit of a godfather in front of goal, showing no mercy and laying all his opponents to rest. Once again, it has been a tremendous season for Pelle, at 29-years-old, he has notched 13 in 16 starts.
The man from Lecce is the epitome of an old-fashioned ‘no. 9’ – the ability to hold the ball up, bringing others into the game, great movement, good in the air, a good football brain and a lethal finisher. It is no wonder how it finds it so easy to score in the Eredivisie.
Feyenoord has scored 36 league goals so far this term, Pelle has scored 36% of them and with the Rotterdam side sitting just four points of the leaders, then a strong challenge to win their first Eredivisie title since the 1998/99 season.
This is personally my pick of the best player of the half-season. Another talent on-loan from Chelsea, no-one can argue that the young Brazilian has not made the most impact out of all of them.
At just 19, he has become Vitesse Arnhem’s quarterback, everytime he receives the ball, the Arnhem side look likely to score. He has amazing figures in front of goal, from 16 starts, Piazón has scored 11 goals and created 8 assists.
With Piazon at the helm, leading the team forward, currently joint on points with Ajax at the top of the Eredivisie, Vitesse look to have the best chance of the past few years in stopping the Amsterdammers stranglehold on the league championship.
Promes was has made a real impact at Twente this year and it’s not surprising since he was named the winner of the Eerste Divisie’s player of the year award, last season while at the promoted Go Ahead Eagles.
Sitting on the right side of attack in a 4-3-3, Promes is finishing as many chances, as he creates them. From 15 games, the 22-year-old has scored eight times while providing four assists. He loves a shot from outside the area and has let fire a total of 49 shots.
This season, he has linked up tremendously with Dusan Tadić and Luc Castaignos and all three are responsible to the impressive third place that Twente are sitting in, just three points from joint leaders Ajax and Vitesse, proving that the division is not a two-horse race.
Averaging 6.6 clearances per game, Karim Rekik has become one of the first names on Philip Cocu’s team sheet at PSV this season, although it has been a disappointing campaign for the young side.
Rekik, himself only 19, joined this summer on loan from Manchester City and already PSV Director of Football Marcel Brands has admitted he has enquired about keeping him for the 14/15 season also.
Standing at 6ft 1inches tall, Rekik uses his height to his advantage for aerial duels and headed clearances. He is proving to be strong in the air, currently winning 73.6% of his aerial duels. Karim is capable of playing from the back, an attribute which is steadily gaining real significance for the PSV backline.
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