Tag Archives: Martin van Geel

Rutten leaves Feyenoord, Gio may take over early

As expected this evening Fred Rutten has left his role as Feyenoord manager with immediate effect reports Ross Anderson.

A meeting was called with Feyenoord’s sporting director Martin van Geel and Rutten resigned after the talks. The 52-year-old former PSV, Twente and Vitesse manager took the decision to leave following his sides failure to reach the Europa League outright after a 3-0 defeat at PEC Zwolle this afternoon.

This result allowed AZ Alkmaar to overtake them in third place on the final day of the season, meaning Feyenoord will have to gain entry into Europe through the play-offs. The defeat in Zwolle was the last straw for club and manager as they both feel a change will be needed in order to navigate their way through the play-offs.

Rutten was already set to leave at the end of the season with assistant Giovanni van Bronckhorst to be in charge next season. We understand Van Bronckhorst will now step up to try and help the Rotterdammers claim a European football place.

Rutten’s side only managed a poor tally of two points from their last five games as they slumped to home defeats to Go Ahead Eagles and Vitesse and away draws with Willem II and Groningen before losing heavily today.

It was ultimately a mixed season in charge of the Rotterdam club for Rutten who never really won the full support of the fans. After a sketchy start to the season where they won only five points from their first six games, which included home defeats to Utrecht and fierce rivals Ajax and found themselves stuck at the wrong end of the table.

The team seemed to find their feet after that and charged up the table into the top three and finished top of their Europa League group with eventual finalists Sevilla. After their title hopes were cruelly dashed in a thrilling 4-3 loss to PSV, they still found a certain consistency in results and looked set for a top three finish before a poor end to the season has cost them.

With Vitesse only managing a draw at home with Utrecht, Feyenoord finished fourth and will play Heerenveen in the play-off before playing either Zwolle or Vitesse in the final should they win.


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Can Mitchell te Vrede be Feyenoord’s permanent attacking answer?

A few weeks of struggling for Feyenoord had one positive upside. The silver lining in their poor start is Mitchell te Vrede, who is responsible for five of the six goals Feyenoord has scored in all competitions. Is he good enough to be the first striker? Martijn Hilhorst does not think so…

Te Vrede started his career at AFC, an amateur club who is known for their connections with Ajax. In 2008, he was snatched away by AZ Alkmaar who saw some potential in the big striker. His first season at a professional club was partially successful, as he was selected to make his debut for the Netherlands Under-18. Although he was not performing well on a club level. He was an official member of the first squad at AZ in 2010/11 (he was already 20 years), but he did not played one minute for them.

AZ still wanted to extend his contract after a year like Mitchell had, but he decided to sign a year deal at Excelsior where he was promised to play more. It could have been a season for him to gain experience, responsibility as a first striker for a Eredivisie club. Eventually playing nineteen matches in which he scored twice, but his greater performances were in the second squad of Excelsior which was a team in combination with the Feyenoord youth. Scoring tons of goals for Excelsior/Feyenoord that season.

Feyenoord’s Technical director Martin van Geel then decided to give him a chance – a free, scoring striker behind your first striker. Who does not want that? During the 2012/13 season, Graziano Pellé made jaws drop all across the Netherlands with his staggering amount of goals so, Te Vrede only played in one match that season.

The season afterwards (last season) was one more successful for Mitchell. Due to injuries, match bans from Pelle he was given more minutes to show off his icy veins. He played in fourteen matches (eleven of them not 100%), playing mostly a substitution and he then managed to score on four occasions.

Not bad, but surely not enough to be the first striker after the departure of Pellé to Southampton. Feyenoord have been looking for months now to buy a top class striker in which they did not succeed in yet. Manchester City’s John Guidetti won’t be their new forward and Wolfsburg’s Bas Dost does not seems to be eager for a return to the Eredivisie. However, they still need a striker.

Yes, he did score three goals in the same amount of Eredivisie matches this season, but looking more detailed to him you could clearly see that Te Vrede is simply not good enough for the way Feyenoord plays. His first-touch is not brilliant while his passing this season haven’t been impressive (69%) and in three matches he only managed to create one single chance. It’s a bit unfair to compare him with Pellé, but the Italian created 57 chances in 28 matches previous season – an average around two per match.

All in all, that is the problem with Mitchell te Vrede. He isn’t capable of controlling the ball and see what is happening around him. His technical abilities are not the required level you would expect from a striker at such a big club. For example, Lex Immers is invisible in the ‘number ten’ position due to constant bad decision-making from Te Vrede.

The opinions around him did shift around because of his great start this season, but it is obvious that he is not the player who will make your team better. Feyenoord did make some bad decisions on the transfer market in the past. So they have to be careful with their next move. With all the news around Feyenoord it is hard to predict if they even will buy a striker. Their focus seems on a replacement for Jordy Clasie who will leave for Southampton or FC Porto.

A internal solution could be the following: Mulder, Wilkshire, Van Beek, Mathijsen, Kongolo; Clasie/El Ahmadi*, Toornstra, Vilhena; Basacikoglu, Immers, Boetius.

* Most likely the replacement for Clasie.

So in a 4-3-3 formation with new signing Jens Toornstra as a ‘number ten’ and Immers as a striker. Feyenoord is known for their brilliant youth and the departure of Pellé isn’t one to panic about. In the price range Feyenoord are currently in they could not buy a striker who is significantly better than Mitchell te Vrede, but in my opinion this seems like a great solution and that even without over-paying on the transfer market, because there is only one week left.


Feyenoord slowly becomes the team they used to be. Footballers such as Schaken, Vormer, Kazim-Richards and Te Vrede are perfect bench material. And with the transfers they already did it is inevitable that they will be a serious contender with Ajax and PSV to become champions.

*All stats courtesy of WhoScored and Squawka, via Opta.


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Feyenoord confirm signing of Jens Toornstra

Feyenoord have confirmed the signing of 25-year-old FC Utrecht attacking midfielder Jens Toornstra on a four year deal for an undisclosed fee writes Will Burns.

Martin van Geel with new signing Jens Toornstra – photo courtesy of Feyenoord.nl

It was announced by many Dutch press outlets last week that a fee had been agreed and Toornstra was present at yesterday’s Feyenoord-Utrecht match at De Kuip where he saw his old side defeat his new side by two goals to one.

Speaking to Feyenoord.nl, Toornstra said: “I have supported Feyenoord since I was a child and the move comes at a good time for me, I was ready for a step up.

“My father was a big Feyenoord supporter and took me to the stadium many times. My first game there was against Ajax, which was unfortunately lost but I was impressed with the stadium and the supporters. Since then I have had a soft spot for Feyenoord. There is nothing more beautiful than the supporters that get behind you. I can now experience this, I’m really excited.”

Toornstra began his career at a youth player at amateur side Alphense Boys before being spotted by scouts of ADO Den Haag. He joined ADO in 2009 and made 104 appearances and scoring 11 times for the club before signing for Utrecht in the winter transfer window of 2013. For Utrecht, he netted 19 goals in 48 games.

Toornstra will be a great addition for Feyenoord’s attacking options however, the main story of the transfer window will be that Martin van Geel and Fred Rutten are yet to replace Graziano Pellè – a striker is needed before the window slams shut on Monday 1st September.


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Feyenoord proposes a Eerste Divisie team


Feyenoord wishes to follow in the footsteps of Ajax, FC Twente and PSV and have a second team join the Eerste Divisie.

Feyenoord’s technical director Martin van Geel, has stated to Algemeen Dagblad that he thinks the reserves of his side can now be beneficial:“Last season we decided against to joining the Jupiler Legaue when we were offered a position. Joining would have cost us about €700,000 and due to this we decided against it. However, we would now like to join in 2015 and hope that we can also be added.”.

The Rotterdam side have an official partnership with fellow city rivals Excelsior and Van Geel admits this would end as a lot of Feyenoord’s youth prospects head to the Eerste Divisie side on loan.

“If we go to the Jupiler League, this will of course have an effect on the collaboration we have with Excelsior. We could not loan players to Excelsior if we have our own squad in the league.”

On the subject of official partnerships, it was announced today that Feyenoord, have now set up an partnership with Vierde Klasse side RBC Roosendaal.


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Feyenoord could be ready to offload assets in plan for future


With Fred Rutten ready to take over the reins at Feyenoord in the summer, the new head coach could have a real battle on his hands in an attempt to keep the current youthful squad together.

Although it has been suggested, should Rutten wish to bring his own players in to match his vision for the Rotterdam club, he will have to cash in on some of the club’s stars to finance his own moves.

Italian striker Graziano Pellè is thought to be the first to pack his bags. Although the Lecce-born hitman has notched 47 goals in 53 appearances, his bad behaviour off the pitch has been frowned upon and the Rotterdam club could receive up to €7m for the 28-year-old.

Three of the younger players in particular have impressed this season and they are already on the radar of top European clubs. However, Jean-Paul Boëtius and Tonny Vilhena are under deals until the summer of 2016, young defender Terence Kongolo (pictured above) has just a season left on his contract.

Feyenoord’s general manager Martin van Geel is working hard on persuading the three starlets to extend their current agreements as they do not want to see them leave in the summer. Vilhena (19) and Boëtius (20) have impressed tremendously this term, with Vilhena managing two goals and five assists and Boëtius notching eight goals and eight assists.

Meanwhile, 20-year-old central defender Kongolo only recently pinned down a place in the starting line-up and he has a total of 11 league outings this season.

Although, Van Geel is desperate to tie down Boëtius, Kongolo and Vilhena, he may be willing to move on some more experienced youngsters. Defender Stefan de Vrij has been linked with moves away since last summer when Premier League side Everton were said to be looking at the 22-year-old.

Bruno Martins Indi and Jordy Clasie are set to be on display in Brazil this summer for Louis van Gaal’s Netherlands. The TV cameras will be beaming the World Cup finals across the globe, which puts these two players directly in the shop window. Martins Indi and Clasie, both 22, themselves have been rumoured to be leaving Rotterdam over the last few transfer windows but are also under contract until 2016.

Portugal-born defender Martins Indi was also linked with Everton as well as Arsenal but a move to neither club has materialised. With young hopes like Kongolo ready to step up into the Feyenoord defence, then moves for Martins Indi and De Vrij may happen come July.

Clasie, has just been named club captain and in recent months has been mooted with a move to England himself with Liverpool. However, before the midfielder signed his contract extension last summer a move to the Serie A with Fiorentina was openly denied by the club. He is the player that Feyenoord can hope to make the biggest amount of profit on, should they choose to.

Whatever happens in the summer, it certainly seems that times are changing for the Rotterdam club, whether or not these adjustments can be positive for Fred Rutten and his team, time will tell.


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Koeman to leave Feyenoord in May


Feyenoord head coach Ronald Koeman has announced he will leave his position at the end of the season. The 50-year-old has opted not to extend his contract with the Dutch club.

“The decision not to sign is one that I’ve made purely by feeling,” said Koeman.

The former international defender lead Feyenoord to second place in the Eredivisie in his first season and followed that up with a third-placed finish last season, however this campaign, they are currently fourth in the league.

The Rotterdam club’s technical director Martin van Geel said it was a “shame” Koeman was leaving.

Van Geel added: “We have plenty of time to look for a successor. It’s not surprising that a coach who had performed fantastically well during his three years here wants to look further. In that sense, I am not really amazed or surprised by his decision.”

After joining the Rotterdam side in 2011, Koeman became the first man to have served as both a player and coach at the three Dutch giants – PSV Eindhoven, Ajax and Feyenoord.


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