Tag Archives: RKC Waalwijk

Eredivisie Week 3 Report: Flemming stuck in AZ’s throat, Antony shines as Ajax sees red and PSV stutters

The third round of fixtures in the Eredivisie is in the books and Will Burns is on hand to report on all the action.

  • AZ’s woes continue as Fortuna-te Sittard grab late point
  • Despite being a man down, Antony and Mohammed Kudus excel once again for Ajax
  • PSV held to a 1-1 draw away to Heracles as Feyenoord smash four past ADO
FC Twente pakt drie punten én de koppositie in de eredivisie
Vaclav Cerny and Danilo celebrate Twente’s 3-1 win against Groningen.

FC Twente easily defeated FC Groningen by 3-1 on Friday evening thanks to goals from Vaclav Cerny, Danilo and substitute Alexander Jeremejeff.

Former Ajax forward Cerny opened the scoring on 22 minutes despite already having a goal ruled out for offside on 13 minutes with VAR’s assistance. It took the VAR officials numerous minutes to make a decision and all of the angles of the cameras looked as though Cerny was indeed onside.

Danilo added a second before half-time through yet another Eredivisie goalkeeping error from Sergio Padt. The ability for goalkeeper to pass the ball has been stressed by many managers in the Dutch top flight, however Sergio Padt added more evidence that this tactic should be avoided after he played the ball straight into the Brazilian’s feet to slot home from long range.

Swedish striker Jeremejeff, a summer signing from German side Dynamo Dresden, slotted home a third to wrap up the victory that leaves Twente undefeated after three games and Groningen sitting with just three points from three outings.

PEC Zwolle pakt eerste winst tegen geplaagd tiental Sparta - FCUpdate.nl
Reza Ghoochannejhad celebrates the first of his two goals in PEC’s 4-0 win over Sparta.

Sparta Rotterdam‘s woes continued with a 4-0 humping away to PEC Zwolle on Saturday afternoon. Henk Fraser’s men are yet to even score a goal in the Eredivisie this season and sit afoot of the standings.

It was quite the even game at MAC³PARK stadium until Mica Pinto was dismissed by referee Allard Lindhout after the Portuguese defender handballed on the line. Reza Ghoochannejhad converted the spot kick in first-half stoppage time.

The Iranian made it 2-0 soon after the restart before Clint Leemans made it 3-0 on 54 minutes. Japanese centre-back Yuta Nakayama completed the rout heading home from a corner to make it four on 71 minutes. Sparta head back to Rotterdam with their third defeat in as many games.

Fortuna Sittard AZ 3-3, gol e highlights di EREDIVISIE OLANDESE | Sky Sport
AZ blew a 3-1 lead in Sittard.

I talked in the season preview about how AZ Alkmaar had now joined Ajax, PSV and Feyenoord as the Eredivisie’s “Big Four” now but at this early stage in the season, I couldn’t have been more wrong.

This past Saturday, they drew 3-3 away to Fortuna Sittard and looked a shadow of their former selves that pushed Ajax to the limit last season. The pressure on Arne Slot and the team was mounting up as they conceded within 10 minutes through a long range strike from Zian Flemming. The 22-year-old ghosted through the midfield and the AZ defenders failed to close him down as he planted a perfect shot past Marco Bizot.

Dani de Wit equalised on 23 minutes and AZ pressed for another goal before the break but with winger Zakaria Aboukhlal going close and the usually prolific Myron Boadu missed a sitter and the sides went into half-time all square.

On 52 minutes, AZ took the lead as Teun Koopmeiners took advantage of a Aleksei Coselev mistake before a Branislav Ninaj error looked to give AZ the points. He dwelled on the ball in his own half and ended up getting robbed by De Wit, who carried the ball towards goal. As Coselev closed the ball down, De Wit played to Boadu who tapped home on 70 minutes. Which all but cement the win for Slot’s men… right?

No, Fortuna failed to give up and Emil Hansson grabbed a goal for the hosts ten minutes before the end before dramatically Flemming caught Bizot out at his near post five minutes into stoppage which sent the 3,000 fans in attendance into raptures. AZ return home with just a point and Slot and his staff must be wondering – where did it all go wrong?

Photo: Heerenveen keeps perfect score, worries about Veerman
Joey Veerman limps off after a bad challenge from Simon Janssen.

Joey Veerman continued his fine form as he converted a penalty to score the only goal of the game in sc Heerenveen‘s win over VVV-Venlo, however Joey’s game was not all rosy.

The midfielder suffered two fouls that earned VVV players red cards and the second forced him to leave the field with a knock. Tobias Pachniok (63) and Simon Janssen (79) were given straight reds as the visitors ended the match with only nine men.

Ajax boekt met tiental zwaarbevochten zege op Vitesse en blijft koploper |  NU - Het laatste nieuws het eerst op NU.nl
Antony and Mohammed Kudus celebrate Ajax’s winner against Vitesse.

Ajax had a scare at the Johan Cruijyff Arena against Vitesse and also experienced a dismissal as Pol van Boekel gave Edson Alvarez his marching orders near the end of the first half for two consecutive fouls on Maximillian Wittek and Luis Openda. The latter foul included a stamp from Alvarez which was picked up by VAR and the red card was issued.

The visitors started the game well going close through Belgian striker Openda after three minutes but it was Ajax who found themselves in the lead after 21 minutes of play. Quincy Promes finished a swift Amsterdammers’ counter attack but Vitesse continued to play some good football and levelled up after the sending off.

Riechedly Bazoer came back to haunt his former employees on 56 minutes smashing a ball into the roof of the net from just inside the box. As the home crowd whistled, Bazoer celebrated emphatically.

Although celebrations were cut short as Ajax put a smile back on the crowd’s faces with a goal from Brazilian Antony, which capped off a phenomenal performance from the summer signing from Sao Paulo. Another signee Mohammed Kudus carried the ball powerfully up the field and played Antony in on the left side and the winger smashed home a finish first time to take the lead.

The combination of Kudus and Antony are incredibly impressive and one wonders if anyone will actually remember the losses of Hakim Ziyech and Donny van der Beek come the end of the season. These two boys are some talents, not only are they replacements for the players that have moved on, they could prove to be improvements within the next nine months.

Mirá el espectacular gol de chilena de Marcos Senesi – Bajo Siete Llaves
An unlikely source of goals, Marcos Senesi, scissor-kicks past Luuk Koopmans to make it 3-2 to Feyenoord.

On Sunday, Feyenoord and ADO Den Haag clashed in the early kick-off with the Rotterdammers coming out on top by four goals to two. The visitors took the lead as Jonas Arweiler took advantage of a Lutsharel Geertruida error to smash a post past Justin Bijlow from close range. The young full-back swiped at a ball looped into the area and missed it completely and it fell lovely for the German to hit home.

The score was level at half-time as Geertruida turned zero to hero and scored his first senior goal on 27 minutes heading home a Steven Berghuis corner. In the second half, Argentine defender Marcos Senesi got the hosts ahead with a piece of sublime finishing. A corner was in danger of being cleared before the ball perfectly landed to the Argentine to scissor kick over Luuk Koopmans in the ADO goal.

The De Kuip raptures were silenced on 66 minutes when Bijlow brought down Arweiler in the area but the German hit a poor penalty that was easy for Bijlow to save. However, VAR reaction was that the keeper came off his line too early and Shaquille Pinas stepped up for the retake to make it 2-2.

Two minutes later, Luciano Narsingh made it 3-2 and a Steven Berghuis penalty kick cemented the 4-2 win at De Kuip. The win has Dick Advocaat’s side in third on seven points behind Ajax and Heerenveen.

Ajax and Heerenveen top Eredivisie after PSV drop points in Almelo -  DutchNews.nl
A Philipp Max penalty spared PSV from defeat.

PSV stumbled to a 1-1 draw away to Heracles in a disappointing performance from Roger Schmidt’s side. Just over 3,000 spectators were socially distancing in the Erve Asito and gave PSV’s “dodgy keeper” Yvon Mvogo some stick every time he got a touch of the ball after his past fortnight of errors.

The hosts were awarded a penalty after a “hand-ball” from Nick Viergever, in which a ball hit him on the shoulder. VAR reviewed it and gave it and former PSV youth player Rai Vloet scored against his old club. Schmidt made the brave decision of a triple substitute at half-time and PSV were awarded of a penalty of their own on 50 minutes.

Sub Noni Madueke was tripped by Teun Bijleveld and German left-back Philipp Max hammered it low in the left corner to tie the game. Despite, the Eindhoven side’s efforts for a winner it was Frank Wormuth’s Heracles that kept the Mvogo busy.

The semi-forgiven Sylvester van der Water, who tried to push a move to the MLS and Orlando City last week… yes you read that right, got a run out and nearly found a way through to grab a winner. Don’t worry Sylvester, Disneyland is closed at the moment.

FC Emmen and Willem II also played out a 1-1 draw with the hosts taking the lead through Michael de Leeuw after just five minutes of play. Vangelis Pavlidis unselfishly played in Tresor to level the game in the 13th minute and that’s where the scoring concluded although Emmen finished the game with ten men after Glenn Bijl picked up two yellow cards.

RKC are still looking for their first points of the season after FC Utrecht defeated Fred Grim’s men by 3-1. Utrecht looked a class above their counterparts throughout but took 40 minutes to break the deadlock, Mimoun Mahi tapping home Django Warmerdam’s low cross from the left wing.

However, RKC grabbed an leveller just before the hour mark with Romanian striker Vitalie Damascan, loaned in from Serie A side Torino, silencing the Utrecht fans with a strong finish from a rapid counter attack.

After many attempts to grab the lead again, Utrecht’s Gyrano Kerk got his side back in the lead on 74 minutes before a Sander van der Streek header finished RKC off with a third five minutes from time. RKC joined ADO and Sparta at the foot of the table with no points from three games.

RESULTS

Friday 25th September 2020

FC Twente 3-1 FC Groningen

Saturday 26th September 2020

PEC Zwolle 4-0 Sparta Rotterdam

Fortuna Sittard 3-3 AZ Alkmaar

sc Heerenveen 1-0 VVV-Venlo

Ajax 2-1 Vitesse

Sunday 27h September 2020

Feyenoord 4-2 ADO Den Haag

FC Utrecht 3-1 RKC Waalwijk

Heracles 1-1 PSV

FC Emmen 1-1 Willem II

TotalDutchFootball.com

Eredivisie Week 2 Report: PSV get lucky, Ajax make RKC’s weekend grim and Van Der Water is a drip!

Well the second week of the Eredivisie had it’s moments and Will Burns is back to review the weekend’s happenings.

  • Despite another Yvon Mvogo mishap, PSV overcome Emmen
  • Willem II continue their goal scoring exploits versus Heracles
  • Ajax stroll past the challenge of RKC Waalwijk
LIVE | VVV via Hupperts al na acht minuten op voorsprong tegen FC Utrecht |  Foto | AD.nl
Guus Hupperts grabbed his first goal for VVV on Friday night.

The action started with the first Friday night game of the season with VVV-Venlo, hot off their eight goals thriller against FC Emmen last weekend hosting FC Utrecht who were appearing in their opening game of the season.

Utrecht were due to play AZ Alkmaar in the opening round of fixtures last weekend, but the KNVB postponed the game to help AZ prepare for the Champions League qualifier against Dynamo Kyiv, which looked to do AZ anything but a favour.

Venlo took the lead after just eight minutes with Guus Hupperts opening his account for his new side, tapping home from close range after last week’s three goals hero Georgios Giakoumakis whipped a ball into the Utrecht box.

The game finished 1-1 however after Sean Klaiber leveled for the visitors in the 58th minute after some good line-up play between Klaiber, Minoum Mahi and Gyrano Kerk. Despite either side trying to breach each other’s goal the game ended all square.

PSV escaped with a 2-1 win at the Philips Stadion against FC Emmen on Saturday evening. On 21 minutes, things were going well for PSV as youngster Noni Madueke tapped home in the six yard box, getting on the end of a Philipp Max cross.

Usually, the heavens would open in Eindhoven and the goals would flow, however, this what not the case. Emmen pressed and forced Swiss goalkeeper Yvon Mvogo into some decent stops but the new stopper would be at fault for the second week in a row.

Mvogo, with the help of his defence, were caught out last week and conceded a poor goal to Groningen after an exchange of passes in their own area. A big defensive no-no. This week, the keeper found himself purely to blame. He was brought in by the club as a sweeper keeper and his passing and ball control was lauded by the staff at the club. Although, a simple backpass from Max caught Mvogo out and in pure Peter Enckelman style, the ball sailed into the goal with just seven minutes to go.

However, PSV’s blushes (and the keeper’s) were spared as Argentine substitute Maxi Romero headed home four minutes into injury time to take all three points. After the ball hit the net, the TV cameras focused on Mvogo to show his relieved face. The keeper definitely owes the young Argentine a post-match pint of Bavaria at the club house.

Arne Slot’s AZ Alkmaar continued what was a bad week for the week with a 1-1 draw at home to PEC Zwolle. AZ crashed out of the Champions League last Tuesday away to Dynamo Kyiv in a lacklustre display by the Alkmaar side.

On Saturday, the week got worse as Calvin Stengs was dismissed by referee Serdar Gözübüyük on just 17th minutes for a high tackle from behind on Kenneth Paal. Although the incident took place three minutes later, VAR gave the ref the advice to send the winger off.

By half-time, Slot had a further headache as his side found themselves a goal down with Clint Leemans put Zwolle ahead on 38 minutes with a looping shot from the outside of the box that chipped Marco Bizot in goal.

Myron Boadu got the ten-men level in the second half finishing off a parry from Michael Zetterer from a Tijani Reijnders shot. Boadu failed to hit it cleanly which stranded the goalkeeper. Zwolle found themselves a man down near to full-time with Thomas Lam being given his marching orders.

The Finnish defender was involved in a scuffle with AZ striker Ferdy Druijf which saw the young striker lose his “man card” after a horrendous piece of over-acting relating to a meek kick he received from Lam. Shame on you Ferdy Druijf!

Vitesse got their season in the Gelredome underway with a 2-0 win against Henk Fraser’s Sparta Rotterdam. They took the lead from a wonderful long-range free-kick from Oussama Tannane that got the 4,914 attendance to their feet.

Before half-time Sparta had a mountain to climb as Belgian defender Michael Heylen was dismissed for his second yellow card. on 42 minutes. On-loan striker Armando Broja (borrowed from Chelsea) cemented the win eight minutes from time, tapping in a rebound from close range.

Heerenveen voorlopig aan kop na zege in Sittard, Vitesse klopt tiental  Sparta | NU - Het laatste nieuws het eerst op NU.nl
Heerenveen clinch win two out of two.

sc Heerenveen continued their winning ways, making it two victories from two with a 3-1 away win against Fortuna Sittard with the Friesland side scoring three goals in 19 minutes in the first half.

Oliver Batista Maier open the scoring on 15 minutes after a Henk Veerman layoff in the area. It was 2-0 after Maier was brought down by Roel Janssen and Joey Veerman converted. The third came from big Henk who showed a great bit of skill to convert from a Arjen van den Heide pass.

The young winger played the ball into the big man and Henk controlled, backheeled himself into space to smash the ball into the roof of the net. Sittard defender Branislav Ninaj was turned inside out. Johnny Jansen’s men could have extended their lead but it was Sittard that got a goal back through former QPR striker Sebastian Polter.

FC Groningen got their season back on track with a 1-0 away win against ADO Den Haag on Sunday morning. Despite the absence of Arjen Robben, who was injured last weekend, an own goal from Shaquille Pinas on 23 minutes was enough to send the Green and White Army home the victors.

Dick Advocaat’s Feyenoord were held to a 1-1 draw against FC Twente in De Kuip. Former Ajax forward Vaclav Cerny shocked the Rotterdammers scoring after a Queensy Menig stole the ball from Marc Diemers inside the area. The ball fell to Danilo and the Brazilian flicked onto Cerny after just 99 seconds.

The game was 1-1 before half-time through Steven Berghuis penalty, which was his second of the game. Young left-back Jayden Oosterwolde showed his immaturity by pulling down Lutsharel Geertruida in the area. Berghuis stepped up and saw the spot-kick saved by Joel Drommel. While sprinting to hammer home the rebound, Julio Pleguezuelo slid in and fouled Berghis for another penalty to be awarded. The strange collection of events ended with Berghuis notching the second penalty.

Feyenoord pressed for a winner but to no avail as Ron Jans’s side left Rotterdam with a point and Advocaat’s men join AZ off the pace from Ajax and PSV at this early stage. Early days indeed, but pressure is on for both teams not to slip up in any games in the near future.

Rangers face tough task keeping on fire Vangelis Pavlidis quiet vs Willem  II | Rangers News
Vangelis Pavilidis opened his account with a double on Sunday versus Heracles.

Heracles suffered a heavy 4-0 defeat away to Willem II. The Almelo side were rocked on Saturday evening by Silvester van der Water texting head coach Frank Wormuth that he would not be available for the match. The reason: his displeasure with clashes between his agent and the club not being able to agree a deal that would allow to winger to join MLS side Orlando City. A million dollar football talent, with a ten cent brain. Good luck with that attitude kid!

With the preparation potentially for the game out of the window for Wormuth, it certainly looked to be the case as Willem II, who scored five midweek against Europa League opponents Progres Niederkorn, scored four second-half goals.

Greek striker, as standard, was amongst the goals notching twice on 46 and 84 minutes with Gorkem Saglam and debutant John Yeboah, signing from Wolfsburg last week, getting the other goals.

Met Mohammed Kudus heeft Ajax er een nieuwe publiekslieveling bij | Trouw
Ajax’s man of the match, Mohamed Kudus.

Finally, Ajax dispatched RKC Waalwijk with ease in the last game of the weekend with a 3-0 victory. The 9,800 attendance did not have to wait for the first goal in the Johan Cruijff Arena as Dusan Tadic (who else?) notched after just ten minutes of play.

A Qunicy Promes shot was blocked by the RKC defence but fell perfectly for the Serbian to flick the ball home. After a Zakaria Labyad goal was chalked off by VAR on three minutes later, the midfielder did get his goal in the 34th minute to send Ajax in at half-time two goals to the good.

New signing Mohammed Kudus slotted the ball over to Noussair Mazraoui on the right wing who crossed for Labyad for the 2-0. In the second half, Luuk Wouters harshly saw red for RKC after a VAR decision that he felled Labyad while he was through on goal. Although the midfielder was actually sandwiched between two men before crumbling to the ground, Wouters took the fall.

Soon after, Erik ten Hag’s side finished the scoring through a Lisandro Martinez header from a Tadic cross. That’s two wins from two for the Amsterdammers and two defeats in a row for Fred Grim’s RKC Waalwijk.

RESULTS

Friday 18th September 2020

VVV-Venlo 1-1 FC Utrecht

Saturday 19th September 2020

AZ Alkmaar 1-1 PEC Zwolle

Vitesse 2-0 Sparta Rotterdam

PSV 2-1 FC Emmen

Fortuna Sittard 1-3 sc Heerenveen

Sunday 20th September 2020

ADO 0-1 FC Groningen

Feyenoord 1-1 FC Twente

Willem II 4-0 Heracles

Ajax 3-0 RKC Waalwijk

TotalDutchFootball.com

Eredivisie Week 1 Report: VVV’s Greek God scores three, Ajax struggle & Gakpo spoils Robben’s return

The first week of the Dutch top flight was full of excitement and Will Burns is on hand with a comprehensive review of the weekend’s action.

  • Greek striker Georgios Giakoumakis’ hat-trick settled a crazy eight goal game.
  • Ajax just get past Henk Fraser’s Sparta
  • Cody Gakpo double makes Robben return an unhappy one
Heerenveen wins after poor preparation against Willem II in season overture  - TV6 News
Big Polish central defender Pawel Bochniewicz (right) celebrates his goal on his debut.

The opening week of the new season got underway at the Abe Lenstra Stadion as Heerenveen dispatched Willem II 2-0 on Saturday afternoon. The scoring was opened on 22 minutes by left-back Lucas Woudenberg after a great counter attack move by the hosts. After the man of the match, Joey Veerman played a delicate ball through the left-back on the edge of their other box, Woudenberg stormed up the field until he played a one-two with the ball to young winger Arjen van der Heide. Upon receiving the ball back, Woudenberg continued into the area to slot it past new Tilburg goalkeeper Robbin Ruiter.

The visitors pressed high in the second half thought they had equalized by danger man Vangelis Pavlidis smashed a ball home but he was deemed offside. However, both sides had chances to build on the score but it was Heerenveen that shut the door on their opponents by notching the second decisive goal. Within 15 minutes of time remaining, that man again, Joey Veerman whipped in a free-kick to be headed home by debutant Pawel Bochniewicz. The Polish centre-back was signed earlier this week from Gornik Zabrze for around €1.4m. A great opening day win for Johnny Jansen’s men that brought smiles on the faces of those that were lucky to attend, with only minimal crowds allowed into the grounds due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Feyenoord began their campaign with a relatively easy win away to John Stegeman’s PEC Zwolle.  Continuing his great goalscoring from last season, Steven Berghuis notched twice in a 2-0 win for the Rotterdammers. It didn’t take long to open the scoring with Berghuis hitting a low drive from outside the box past Zwolle stopper Michael Zetterer after just 5 minutes of play. The win was cemented with Berghuis penalty kick on 68 minutes after Orkan Kocku was fouled in the area by Thomas Lam.

The remaining game on Saturday was another 2-0 score line with Ron Jans’ FC Twente defeating Fortuna Sittard.  As mentioned in our season preview, it was yet another summer of all change in Enschede as Twente hired a whole new staff and technical director with many changes on the pitch too.  Meanwhile, the team seemed to gel and took the lead after ten minutes through former Ajax youth Queensy Menig. It was some good work on the left for Menig who played a quick pass exchange with impressive young left-back Jayden Oosterwolde and then cut inside to fire home for the lead.

Soon after the half-time break, Brazilian signing Danilo, a summer loan signing from Ajax, made it 2-0 converting a penalty after Branislav Nihaj dragged Jesse Bosch down in the box. Twente looked more likely to add to their score than any chance of a Sittard comeback.  A great start for Jans in his new role with his youthful squad with an average age of 23.6 years, third youngest only to Heerenveen (22.5) and Groningen (23.3).

Sunday opened up with a wild game in Emmen as VVV-Venlo came back from two goals down to end up winning 5-3 against FC Emmen.  The hosts took the lead early on with a fourth minute strike from Robbert de Vos before Croatian striker Marko Kolar added a second after the break to extend the lead to 2-0.

VVV beats Emmen thanks to hat trick Giakoumakis, Heracles too strong for  ADO - Teller Report
VVV’s new striker Georgios Giakoumakis secures the match ball after his hat-trick in their 5-3 win.

However, Greek striker Georgios Giakoumakis, a free agent signing in the summer from AEK Athens, notched a 22-minute hat-trick to take the game to 3-2. Nicolas Laursen levelled the game in the 76th minute before an own goal from debutant Caner Cavlan gave VVV the 4-3 lead. Emmen searched for an injury time equalizer but Jafar Arias put the nail in the coffin for Emmen making it 5-3 four minutes into stoppage time.

Frank Wormuth’s Heracles defeated the new-look ADO Den Haag side 2-0 on Sunday afternoon.  ADO is now managed by former midfielder Aleksandr Rankovic but the beginning to his new career did not go to plan when former PSV youth Rai Vloet gave Wormuth’s men the lead just after the break.  The very impressive Sylvester van de Water finished the scoring adding a second on 70 minutes. The 23-year-old carried the ball through the midfield before dishing the ball to Luca de la Torre on the left of the area, before getting on the end of the return ball to poke the ball past Luuk Koopmans in goal.  To make matters worse for Rankovic, he saw defender Boy Kemper (on loan from Ajax) sent off soon after.

Scheidsrechter Kamphuis reageert op rode kaart Tagliafico
Ajax’s Nicolas Tagliafico was dismissed after an handball decision.

Ajax got their title challenge underway with a narrow 1-0 win away to Sparta Rotterdam with some great difficulty. Erik ten Hag’s side played the majority of the match with just ten men after Nicolas Tagliafico was dismissed by referee Jochem Kamphuis, however it looked a harsh decision as the Argentine was deemed to purposely handball an attempt to put through Mohamed Rayhi on goal.

Despite the setback, debutant Antony who was lively throughout, scored from a bouncing drive outside the area just before half-time.  It was a goal that Sparta stopper Benjamin van Leer, playing against his old club, should be possibly stopped.

Henk Fraser’s men pressed the Amsterdammers but it was to no avail, Ajax grabbed their first win however, it was too close for comfort.

Football world sympathizes with bad luck Arjen Robben | Football - World  Today News
Arjen Robben’s return did not end well for the winger after his first-half injury.

Arjen Robben did not experience a good return to FC Groningen as suffered an injury before the half-hour mark in his side’s 3-1 defeat to PSV.  Over 6,000 disappointed fans attended as the 36-year-old winger, who retired last July after a hugely successful career, returned to where it all began.

Soon after Robben’s substitution, Cody Gakpo showed great power to shrug off the challenge of Azor Matusiwa and finishing prowess to grab his first of the day to put Roger Schmidt’s side ahead. Howeve, it was not all plain sailing for Schmidt as an error from new goalkeeper Yvon Mvogo allowed Tomas Suslov level it up at 1-1.  The Swiss international and Jordan Teze were caught out playing the ball to each other in their own area and new Norwegian striker Jorgen Strand Larsen incepted a pass which landed at Suslov’s feet for the equalizer.

Soon after, PSV regained the lead as Donyell Malen was put through by Noni Madueke and finished past Sergio Padt.  PSV were given a harsh penalty on 82 minutes which Padt saved from Malen and despite, Groningen having their chances to level the game up, PSV emerged as the victors with Gakpo’s second goal on three minutes from time.  Notwithstanding, the horrendous error in defence for the hosts goals, Schmidt experienced a good start to his new head coach role at PSV.

The final game of the weekend saw RKC Waalwijk fall to Vitesse by the single goal thanks to a Oussama Darfalou effort in first half stoppage time.

RESULTS

Saturday 12th September 2020

FC Utrecht P-P AZ Alkmaar

Heerenveen 2-0 Willem II

PEC Zwolle 0-2 Feyenoord

FC Twente 2-0 Fortuna Sittard

Sunday 13th September 2020

FC Emmen 3-5 VVV-Venlo

Heracles 2-0 ADO Den Haag

Sparta Rotterdam 0-1 Ajax

FC Groningen 1-3 PSV

RKC Waalwijk 0-1 Vitesse

TotalDutchFootball.com

FREE Eredivisie 2020/21 Season Preview Magazine including team previews, betting picks and season predictions

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TotalDutchFootball.com

Eerste Divisie: Super Mario at the double for Roda JC… again!

Header-EersteDivisieReport

We saw a total of 36 goals over the ten Eerste Divisie games this weekend, Will Burns is here with all the action.

Roda JC mario engels

Go Ahead Eagles are the frontrunners at the top of the table after two games, however only on goal difference as TOP Oss, RKC Waalwijk and Roda JC, like the Eagles, have won both of their games.

John Stegeman’s Go Ahead defeated FC Eindhoven 2-1 thanks to goals from Istvan Bakx and Richard van der Venne. Debutant Portuguese winger Marcelo Lopes replied for Eindhoven.

TOP Oss smashed Jong PSV 4-1 as Huseyin Dogan (2), Norichio Nieveld and Bryan Smeets got on the scoresheet.

Five goals were shared as RKC defeated FC Den Bosch 3-2. Mario Bilate grabbed a brace in his first goals for the club since moving from FC Emmen in the summer.

Mario Engles (mobbed in the picture above) hit a double last week against Jong Ajax and managed another two in a 2-1 win over Almere City this week to give Roda JC their second win. I said in the Eerste Divisie season preview that the German would make an impact this season but I did not expect him to notch four goals at this stage.

Results

Friday 24th August

Almere City 1-2 Roda JC

FC Den Bosch 2-3 RKC Waalwijk

FC Eindhoven 1-2 Go Ahead Eagles

Helmond Sport 2-2 FC Twente

Jong Ajax 5-2 FC Dordrecht

SC Cambuur 2-1 Jong AZ Alkmaar

Sparta Rotterdam 2-0 FC Volendam

Telstar 0-1 MVV Maastricht

TOP Oss 4-1 Jong PSV

Monday 27th August

Jong Utrecht 1-2 N.E.C. Nijmegen

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Eerste Divisie: Stegeman makes an flying start at Go Ahead Eagles

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The first week of the Eerste Divisie is complete and as usual it was a weekend full of goals with only one goalless draw across the fixtures. Will Burns is on hand to describe the action.

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The big winners this week were Go Ahead Eagles who thrashed Jong FC Utrecht by five goals. It was the dream start for new coach John Stegeman as Richard van der Venne notched the opener on 22 minutes and defender Gino Bosz doubled the scoring by half-time. Thomas Verheijdt, Maarten Pouwels and Paco van Moorsel completed the rout after the break to send the De Adelaarshorst faithful home optimistic about the new campaign ahead.

On Monday night, Almere City defeated Jong AZ as the era of Michele Santoni began. The Italian left his role as Technical Coach for Cagliari in the summer to up sticks to the Netherlands and began life with a 3-2 win. It was eventful game that saw Almere three goals to the good before half-time with goals from Niek Vossebelt, Tim Receveur and Stijn Meijer. Almere left-back Moustpha Seck was shown red for a foul in the area and AZ’s Jelle Duin missed the spot-kick. AZ got a goal back against the ten-men through Tijani Reijnders and Ferdy Druijf scored in stoppgae time but there’s where the comeback ended.

In the Eindhoven derby, Jong PSV came from behind to dispatch FC Eindhoven 2-1 at De Herdgang. The visitors took an early lead when Siebe van der Heyden rose like a salmon to beat Dirk Abels to head home a 6th minute free-kick. However, Zakaria Aboukhlal equalised in first-half stoppage to level the game up with a long range effort that took a deflection. Full-back Jordan Teze found himself in unfamiliar territory to hit PSV’s winner.

Former Eredivisie champions FC Twente had a successful start to the campaign at home to fellow relegated side Sparta Rotterdam. German loanee striker Ulrich Bapoh notched after ten minutes played but former Nottingham Forest target man Lars Veldwijk equalised in the 16th. Tom Boere converted a penalty before half-time to wrap the game up for Twente.

Elsewhere, SC Cambuur clawed back a 2-0 deficit away to N.E.C. to take a point back to Leeuwarden with two late goals. Anass Achahbar, formerly of Feyenoord, and Sven Braken gave Nijmegen to lead only for Frank Sturing to score in the wrong goal three minutes from time. Full-back Emmanuel Mbende was the hero notching five minutes in stoppage time to make it 2-2 and send the away fans home in jubilation.

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Roda JC dispatched last year’s champions Jong Ajax thanks to two goals from German winger Mario Engels (pictured above) in a 2-1 victory.

There was further wins for RKC Waalwijk, TOP Oss and FC Den Bosch before the weekend was over while FC Dordrecht and Helmond Sport played a goalless draw.

Results

Friday 17th August

FC Dordrecht 0-0 Helmond Sport

Go Ahead Eagles 5-0 Jong FC Utrecht

Jong PSV 2-1 FC Eindhoven

MVV Maastricht 0-2 TOP Oss

N.E.C. 2-2 SC Cambuur

Roda JC 2-1 Jong Ajax

FC Twente 2-1 Sparta Rotterdam

FC Volendam 1-2 FC Den Bosch

RKC Waalwijk 1-0 Telstar

Monday 20th August

Jong AZ 2-3 Almere City

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Eerste Divisie 2018/19 Preview

The Eerste Divisie has undergone a revamp this summer and has been renamed the Keuken Kampioen Divisie due to a new sponsorship taking over, Will Burns looks at the season ahead.

Looking at the twenty teams involved in the 2018/19 Eerste Divisie campaign, the league looks strong with many contenders for promotion. Some big names like FC Twente, Sparta Rotterdam, N.E.C. Nijmegen, Go Ahead Eagles, Roda JC, SC Cambuur and RKC Waalwijk are in the competition this year in what looks to be an unpredictable season (as usual) for the Dutch first division.

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As expected, on paper FC Twente look to have one of the strongest squads with Oussama Assaidi, Xandro Schenk, Peet Bijen, Wout Brama, Haris Vuckic, Tim Holscher and Jari Oosterwijk all lining up for The Tukkers. If the former youth prodigy Oosterwijk can’t get new promoted head coach Marino Pusic goals then Tom Boere surely will. Boere scored 33 goals in 38 appearances for TOP Oss in the 2016/17 season and if he can replicate that performance he’ll surely fire his team into promotion contention.

The oldest club in the Netherlands, Sparta Rotterdam fell out of the Eredivisie last year and Henk Fraser takes over the reins from Dick Advocaat. De Kasteelheren themselves have an abundance of talent well capable of mounting a challenge from promotion. With Lars Veldwijk, Ragnar Ache, Edouard Duplan and Mohamed Rayhi in the attack, Sparta fans should be treated to plenty of goals. Dries Wuytens and Bart Vriends provide some solid top flight experience at the back and Suently Alberto and Giliano Wijnaldum (younger brother of Liverpool’s Georginio) should benefit from working with them while Adil Auassar should create chances for fun. One big story coming out of the Het KasteelI was the turnaround of Royston Drenthe. The former Real Madrid and Everton man has opted to come back to football after retiring last January to take up a rap career under the moniker of ‘Roya2Faces’.

Jack de Gier is once again linked up with N.E.C. Nijmegen returning from a two-year stint at Almere City. He has some great talent at his disposal from the goalkeeper Gino Coutinho to the forward line with Anass Achahbar up top. In defence, Guus Joppen, Robin Buwalda, Rens van Eijden, Josef Kvida and Leroy Labylle are an array of resource with Eredivisie experience for the back-line. In the middle of the park, Joey van den Berg has the ability to run the show for most games. One blow for De Gier is losing winger Randy Wolters to injury until the new year but one guy that I feel will stand out is. He signed on from Heracles in the summer but I feel has too much quality to playing in the second tier Brahim Darri week in, week out.

Go Ahead Eagles john stegeman

The less said about the 2017/18 campaign, the better for Go Ahead Eagles and Total Dutch Football.com’s Steve Davies (an Eagles fan). Despite spending the previous campaign in the Eredivisie, the season never really got going for the Deventer boys. The management change of Leon Vlemmings with Jan van Staa failed to produce an upturn in form with the Eagles eventually stumbling to a 17th place finish – the club’s worst for over a decade. Unsurprisingly, the summer saw an overhaul of both the playing squad and technical staff with John Stegeman raising many an eyebrow by taking a step down from a successful spell at Heracles to take charge of his beloved Eagles. The 41-year-old was a huge success in Almelo leading Heracles up to from 14th to sixth in the Eredivisie so he could most certainly be the man for the job. Stegeman will have almost a completely new squad to choose from with notable arrivals. Goalkeeper Hobie Verhulst has made the switch from FC Volendam, full-back Roland Baas and Czech winger Jaroslav Navrátil has followed Stegeman from Heracles. Former Heraclieden defender Jeroen Veldmate, turned down the opportunity to play in the top flight with newly promoted FC Emmen to make the switch to De Adelaarshorst. The optimism is as high as it has been for a number of years, so expect the men from Deventer to be back in the more familiar surroundings of the promotion/relegation play-off picture come the end of this season.

Roda JC managed by former Leeds United defender Robert Molenaar, will also be in the running. ‘The Terminator’ known for his side’s tough tackling and in-your-face football will have his team organised and hard to beat. They do not possess as much quality as many other teams but German right-winger Mario Engels will be a force to reckon with. Fast, strong with a clinical finish, the 24-year-old has fantastic ability from set-pieces and may steal the show in many games.

Former Twente boss René Hake still resides at SC Cambuur, a job he gained last January and steered the Leeuwarden side into eighth place. His business in the summer has not really strengthened the side into contenders and another year of missing out on promotion looks likely. The same can be said for RKC Waalwijk. After an incredibly disappointing finish in 18th last year, new RKC boss Fred Grim has not had the funds to increase hopes of reaching the playoffs.

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Jong Ajax and Jong PSV will be using the league as usual to nurture their talents ready for the heights of the Eredivisie and European football and taking points away from the promotion hopefuls.

When it comes to predicting who could finish as champions, I would need a crystal ball the size of De Kuip to come up with a conclusion for such a crazy league.

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TotalDutchFootball.com

Eerste Divisie Report: Week 3

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It’s a certainty that the Jupiler League has already seen some spectacular, surprising matches and this past Friday was not much different with VVV-Venlo going on a goal frenzy and NAC finally living up to the challenge writes Thomas Jacobs.

After two losses Robert Maaskant’s NAC really needed a win and they had the perfect opponent in Jong Ajax, who have been defending like statues this season. The three points were absolutely vital as the NAC-fans where – already – starting to get irritated with the club. Not only NAC, but MVV Maastricht as well have not earned any points after two matches. With an away-game in Oss in hindsight, it is going to be hard to get any points at all.

On the top of the table there are four sides with 100% records. Achilles ’29, Jong PSV, FC Volendam and FC Emmen are having a perfect season so far and latter is the first team who tried to keep their winning streak going, but in and against Den Bosch they never got any chance to do that. Just before the half-hour mark, Jordy Thomassen scored the first goal of many for FC Den Bosch. The home side were a lot stronger and via Arda Havar and Malcolm Esajas they eventually won the match easily with 3-0. A walk in the park for Den Bosch manager René van Eck.

"Droomstart? We zijn pas twee duels onderweg"

Another team who kept their perfect start in tact was Achilles ’29, but this is seen as one of the biggest surprise in the league. Mentally wise a great boost, because both games where won after sensational comebacks. The third team they faced was RKC Waalwijk, who tied their first two games. In a really boring game chances where a rarity for both teams, 0-0 was therefore a logical, but quite disappointing end result. Leaving Achilles remains unbeaten and RKC Waalwijk with three points out of the same amount of matches.

Already two of the four teams with the perfect record did not manage to win their third match and Jong PSV was not an exception in this rule. Visitors VVV-Venlo were on rampage and nothing could stopped them that day. Especially their creative mastermind Gianluca Nijholt was on fire, he scored the first goal of the match – a brilliant screamer which smashed off both posts before crossing the line. The 25-year-old, who has attracted interest from De Graafschap, was also responsible for the third VVV-goal. Manager Maurice Steijn eventually left Eindhoven with three points in the bag after a simple, big 5-1 victory against Jong PSV.

The last club who didn’t lose a point in the first matches was FC Volendam. They already played against NAC Breda (4-1) and FC Den Bosch (2-0) and where full of confidence when they faced another relegated side in FC Dordrecht. ‘Dordt’ where the hosts, but Volendam took care of business. With the always dangerous, fast Gyliano van Velzen and ’goal scorer for fun’ Jack Tuyp it was already 2-0 at half-time. Latter was responsible for both goals. After the break, Dordrecht immediately pulled one back but this was not enough. On the hour mark, it was Kees Kwakman who made it 3-1. Therefore, FC Volendam are the only club with a 100% record after three matchdays.

Eindhoven – Rotterdam will be played in the Eredivisie this Sunday  (PSV – Feyenoord), but the rehearsal between the two cities took place in Rotterdam this Friday. Sparta hosted a match against FC Eindhoven. Latter was the better side, but just before half time it was even Sparta who came undeserved ahead via Loris Brogno. In the first five minutes of the second half they even scored two more goals. Paco van Moorsel and Thomas Verhaar eventually gave Sparta the flattered 3-0 win.

NAC Breda played their second home match, after the 1-4 loss against FC Volendam on the first matchday. They didn’t started well, but  took the control of the match eventually. Jong Ajax couldn’t get any big chances, and it was no surprise the hosts won the game. Goals from Mats Seuntjens, Kevin Brands and debutant Sjoerd Ars all fell in the first half. A simple 3-0 victory for Maaskant and his boys.

MVV Maastricht didn’t started well this season. Having nil points after two matches. Apparently, third time is the charm, because they finally earned the points they needed. FC Oss was their first ‘victim’ of the season.  MVV started the match with a good attacking style and within thirty minutes they were 0-2 ahead. Just a few minutes after the second goal, FC Oss were awarded a penalty and came back in the match. Stef Peeters made sure MVV would win the game with the third goal for the away side, clinching the three points.

In Velsen there was the match between rivals SC Telstar and Almere City. SC Telstar were the better team and came ahead twice via two free kicks from Mohammed Ajnan. He wasn’t the only one who scored twice that match. Sven Braken, who played for MVV last season, scored both Almere-goals, one of them was in dying seconds of the match. 2-2 was a result both parties could be happy with.

Eight of the nine matches have been covered. The ‘last one’ was between Helmond Sport and Fortuna Sittard. After a good start from the home team, it was Fortuna Sittad who took the lead just before half time via Lars Hutten. Fortuna Sittard-striker Lekesiz scored their second goal just after a hour. A good win + a clean sheet for Fortuna: 0-2.

Player of the week:

Gianluca Nijholt. Scoring twice against Jong PSV. The attacking midfielder from VVV-Venlo was  -without a doubt – the best player in the match versus PSV which they won 1-5, but also in this matchday.

RESULTS

Friday 21st August

NAC 3-0 Jong Ajax

Telstar 2-2 Almere City

Dordrecht 1-3 FC Volendam

Helmond Sport 0-2 Fortuna Sittard

Achilles ’29 0-0 RKC Waalwijk

Jong PSV 1-5 VVV-Venlo

Sparta Rotterdam 3-0 FC Eindhoven

FC Den Bosch 3-0 FC Emmen

FC Oss 1-3 MVV Maastricht

 

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Eerste Divisie Report: Week 2

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After losing their first match, NAC Breda and Go Ahead Eagles went into ‘Matchday Two’ looking for a win. Both teams needed the three points even though it’s just the start of the season. FC Volendam and FC Dordrecht hoped to hold their 100% record, just like FC Emmen. With 27 goals in eight matches there was more than enough spectacle, but even more spectacular was the match in Limburg between Fortuna Sittard and Achilles ’29  writes Thomas Jacobs.

With the unfortunate draw last week against FC Den Bosch, Fortuna Sittard looked to gain three points at home against Achilles’29. Before kick-off, the visitors looked like the perfect team to beat, and five minutes after the half-time break, Sittard gained a comfortable 2-0 lead. Gokhan Lekesiz, who missed a penalty last week, netted twice. Achilles’29 became stronger after the second goal, and Sittard buckled as just after the hour mark, Freek Thoone got Achilles back in the game with a lucky goal before Levi Raja Boaen notched the equaliser with ten minutes to go. Just when it looked like there would not be a winner, Eef van Riel notched to make 3-2. Achilles grabbed a fourth in injury time via Hielke Penterman. With this sensational comeback, Achilles’29 start their season with six points in two games, taking them to the top of the table.

With a 4-1 win over NAC Breda last week, FC Volendam have also started fantastically. This week, Den Bosch were the opponents and Volendam ran out the better team as 2-0 winners with Jack Tuyp and Kevin van Kippersluis with the goals. This was impressive as Volendam had Rafik El Hamdi sent off after two yellow cards.

NAC travelled to FC Eindhoven and returned home to Breda with a 2-1 defeat. After just one shot on target in the first half, the second half was more exciting. A Kevin Brands free-kick gave Breda the advantage but FC Eindhoven debutant Anil Koc grabbed the equaliser with his first touch. Two minutes later, Anthony van den Hurk notched the winner. After two games, NAC are standing at the bottom of the table with zero points.

Just like NAC Breda, Go Ahead Eagles began the season with a loss. This week, it was the first match in the Eagles’ renewed stadium ‘De Adelaarshorst’ and Telstar was the opponent. Eagles striker Leon de Kogel scored twice after just eighteen minutes. Telstar looked lacklustre and unable to create any chances. Eagles kept attacking and they ran out 5-0 winners with Mohamed Hamdaoui, Orhan Dzepar (on his debut) and Kenny Teijsse scoring the other goals.

FC Emmen hosted FC Dordrecht and in an evenly balanced match, the hosts won 1-0. Erixon Danso gave the home side the lead on the hour mark and Dordrecht tried for the equalizer, but every time Dennis Telgenkamp was on hand to protect the points for Emmen.

The first half between VVV-Venlo and FC Oss went back and forth, till the 39th minute when VVV defender Jason Bourdouxhe received a red card, and FC Oss were awarded a penalty. Seku Conneh made no mistake and FC Oss were a goal in front. After half-time, there was a magical moment from Leandro Resida. With an perfect chip he beat the goalkeeper and made it 1-1. However, it only lasted for a few minutes as Alvin Fortes scored the winner, and FC Oss went home with the three points in the bag.

In their first game of the season, Sparta Rotterdam drew 1-1 away to RKC Waalwijk. Thomas Verhaar scored a stunning goal near the end of the first-half to send Sparta into half-time with the lead. However, Arsenio Valpoort scored the undeserved equalizer in the 87th minute, giving his team a point to cherish.

In Maastricht, Jong PSV tried to win back-to-back games against MVV. Stef Peeters gave MVV the lead but in the second half, PSV turned the match around into a 3-1 lead after goals from Sander Heesakkers, Clint Leemans and Boris Cmiljanic. Pieter Nys gained a consolation and MVV was close to get nailing a point, but Luuk Koopmans did not let that happen.

The last match of the weekend was played between Jong Ajax and Helmond Sport on Monday evening. Ajax, playing with numerous players of the first team, started well and it resulted in a 1-0 lead after sixteen minutes with Croatian Robert Muric scoring. It was a contender for ‘goal of the week’ with a phenomenal long range effort in the top corner. Helmond Sport surged forward and in the 67th minute, Steven Edwards scored the deserving equalizer.

PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Leon de Kogel (Go Ahead Eagles)

The big striker was very important for his side with two goals after eighteen minutes. It was the start of an easy 5-0 win over SC Telstar.

RESULTS

Friday 14th August

Fortuna Sittard 2-4 Achilles ’29

FC Eindhoven 2-1 NAC Breda

VVV-Venlo 1-2 FC Oss

RKC Waalwijk 1-1 Sparta Rotterdam

MVV 2-3 Jong PSV

FC Volendam 2-0 FC Den Bosch

FC Emmen 1-0 FC Dordrecht

Sunday 16th August

Go Ahead Eagles 5-0 SC Telstar

Monday 17th August

Jong Ajax 1-1 Helmond Sport

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Eerste Divisie Report: Week 1

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All the games of the first matchday of the Jupiler League have been played and without a doubt the contest between relegated NAC Breda and FC Volendam brought the biggest surprise writes Thomas Jacobs.

Divine Naah did not help Breda after he received two yellow cards after unsportsmanlike fouls. After the half-time break, Volendam took advantage of the player advantage as they travelled home with the three points and a big 4-1 win.

Although it was a surprising result, it was was the most spectacular match of the day. That was Almere City playing host to VVV-Venlo as both teams managed to score three goals each in an exciting game, where no one really deserved to win and finished level at 3-3.

In Dordrecht, FC Eindhoven rolled into town hoping to start the competition with a win. Where the Eindhoven side deserved the win, an even took the lead, it was Dordrecht who ended with the three points. They played on the counter, which was successful for a 3-1 win.

While Dordrecht stole the win, Fortuna Sittard virtually handed their points to FC Den Bosch. After an unlucky own goal from Den Bosch they were ahead 2-1 and were awarded a penalty. Gökhan Lekesiz stepped up to take it but missed. It was miss was deemed crucial as Den Bosch scored the equaliser just minutes after the failed spot kick. In the dying minutes, Den Bosch thought they had stole all three points, but the referee chalked off a goal due to a foul.

The goal of the weekend came in the FC Oss and FC Emmen game. Boy Deul – who was one of the five to watch in our season preview magazine – put his team ahead with a stunning shot from 20 meters firing into the top corner. Emmen won the game eventually by 3-0 after a red card for FC Oss defender Jeffrey Ket hampered the sides chances of a comeback.

Helmond Sport also began with a win with a great goal from Stanley Elbers was enough to clinch all three points. MVV was desperately looking for the equalizer, but every time the hosts ‘keeper Wouter van der Steen was in the way to save the points for his side.

Semi-pro club Achilles ’29 were the hosted Jong Ajax and after a sensational comeback they won the game 2-1. With just ten minutes to go, Joey Dekkers scored the winner with a beauty.

On Monday evening, Telstar were hoping to start the competition with a win but in a boring first half, it was RKC Waalwijk who opened the scoring. However, Telstar grabbed the important equalizer and the match ended in 1-1, in which both teams – should be – happy with the points shared.

The second game on Monday saw Jong PSV and relegated Go Ahead Eagles go head-t0-head. After 25 minutes, Jong PSV took the lead with an stunning volley from young midfielder Olivier Rommens. However, the match fizzled out with only one shot on target in the whole second-half. Jong PSV deservedly won their first match while Eagles did not have the power and creativity to create the equalizing goal. The Eagles will need to improve to if they wish to gain promotion back to the Eredivisie. In a remarkable fact: Jong PSV have now faced six relegated sides at home in their first two professional seasons and have not lost one (winning four and drawing two).

PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Wouter van der Steen (Helmond Sport)

With crucial stops in the 1-0 win against MVV, he really saved the third points for his team.

RESULTS

Friday 7th August

FC Den Bosch 2-2 Fortuna Sittard

Almere City FC 3-3 VVV-Venlo

Helmond Sport 1-0 MVV Maastricht

FC Oss 0-3 FC Emmen

FC Dordrecht 3-1 FC Eindhoven

NAC Breda 1-4 FC Volendam

Achilles ’29 2-1 Jong Ajax

Monday 10th August

Jong PSV 1-0 Go Ahead Eagles

Telstar 1-1 RKC Waalwijk

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Interview: Romeo Castelen of Western Sydney Wanderers

Another Dutchman down under Rogier Waalder catches up with Western Sydney Wanderers winger Romeo Castelen in an exclusive interview for Total Dutch Football.

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RW: Firstly, it would be interesting to hear how you ended up at Western Sydney – how did the move come about?

RC: It was quite easy, I was playing in Holland and WSW coach Tony Popovic saw some games and contacted my agent and then he called me. We spoke for almost half an hour and he explained his idea about the club and his plans with me, and I was triggered by his professionalism and how he approaches the game and how he wanted to play. Actually, he really convinced me to come over.

RW: You played in the Eredivisie last season with RKC but ended up being relegated – was there an option to stay in Waalwijk and play in the Eerste Divsie?

RC: No there was no option to stay at the club at all. My old coach Erwin Koeman was there and he called me to join the side and it was only for one season and after that I will move on. It’s pity we got relegated, but when I was with them I did my best and I gave everything to the club.

 

RW: Had you been to Australia before this move and how are you enjoying life in Australia?

RC: I had never been to Australia before but it was always a plan for my family to come here on holidays. However, it never got to that point, now we’re actually living here now. It’s great, it’s warm here and my wife also enjoys it. For us, living here is great. It’s a great country for the children, the people are really friendly, so living here is really great.

 

RW: What attracted to you about playing for Western Sydney in the A-League?

RC: Attracted about the story of the club and the coach. I checked it online to see how many fans they attract in such a small period. This is something I always like to go play for clubs where there is a great fanbase. My first professional club Den Haag also had a great base, then I went to Feyenoord, then to Hamburg in Germany – they all had big fans. The story really attracted me and what the coach told me.

Romeo Castelen machte in der letzten Bundesliga-Saison kein Spiel für den HSV

RW: You’ve played for ADO, Feyenoord and Hamburg in the past, how does the atmosphere inside the Pirtek Stadium compare to your former clubs?

RC: I’ve played for clubs which have 50-60,000 people in Germany and my first professional club only had 11,000 but the atmosphere was crazy. So I like that the people and the fans here are very passionate, it’s a good feeling that in good and bad times, it’s a good advert for an A-League club how the fans always come in big numbers at home and away games.

 

RW: What are your ambitions for this coming season?

RC: Biggest goal is to qualify for the next round of the Asian Champions League, this is our biggest goal as the season ended very disappointing for us. But that waas due to the schedule and other reasons, new team and new players that need time to gel. It’s very disappointing but we still have the ACL which we are putting everything on.

 

RW: You’ve played your games in the heat of the Aussie summer, are you more of a summer or winter person?

RC: Well in Europe we always play in the Winter, it is a different experience to play in the heat and normally like in the beginning of the season and the end of the season there’s a small period where it’s warm. But here, the majority of the season is very hot and humid – it’s a different game. The pace of the game is different, it was a good experience but now I’m used to it.

 

RW: What’s been he biggest difference between Western Sydney and your previous clubs?

RC: Biggest difference they were already had a big history and the Wanderers have only been around for three years. The clubs like Hamburg, is the oldest existing club in the Bundesliga. I mean you cannot compare the fanbase, there’s a massive fanbase at the clubs in other countries. I think Western Sydney are on a good way to match that in a few years, hopefully.

 

RW: If there was one former teammate of yours from a previous club that you could play with at Western Sydney who would it be and why?

RC: Nigel de Jong who currently plays at AC Milan, I would love it because he’s a good friend of mine.

 

RW: Finally, what do you think the KNVB should do with Guus Hiddink?

RC: He’s a well respected coach and I mean getting the job in the first place, let the coach finish the job and hopefully we qualify for the Euro. I always feel like we have to give the coach the responsibility to finish the job.

Name-RogierWaalder

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Eerste Divisie preview

Header-EersteDivisie

A total of 20 teams will take part each week in the Eerste Divisie, also known as the Jupiler League. It will be the fifty-ninth edition of the competition, since its establishment in 1955. The season will run from the beginning of August 2014 until May 2015, as teams fight for promotion into the Dutch top flight – the Eredivisie.

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After facing relegation last season from the Eredivisie, Roda JC Kerkrade will begin their new campaign in the Eerste Divisie, also joined by NEC Nijmegen and RKC Waalwijk also faced relegation but this time through the playoff rounds after finishing second and third from bottom in the top flight last season.  All three clubs will be hoping that their time spent in the Eerste Divisie will be short lived, as they battle for promotion during the 2014/15 campaign.

WANT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE DUTCH DOMESTIC LEAGUE?

Only the club that tops the table at the end of the season guarantees themselves automatic promotion to the Eredivisie. Teams finishing between second and fifth will enter the second round of the Eredivisie promotion/relegation play-offs, which also gives the sides a chance to qualify for the top flight.

There is also a slight chance for teams who finish the season between sixth and ninth to gain entry into the Eredivisie, as the teams will also enter the Eredivisie play-offs in the first round of the knockout format. The rest of the ten teams finishing from 10th to last will remain in the Eerste Divisie for the following season.

WHO ARE FAVOURITES TO GAIN PROMOTION?

Without a doubt the main objective for the three clubs that have been relegated to the Eerste Divisie will be hoping that they can rejoin the top sides next season, but other clubs such as FC Den Bosch, VVV-Venlo, FC Eindhoven and De Graafschap will all be hoping they can finish in a promotion place, whether it be a round one or two entry into the playoff faze, they will still be in with a chance to gain promotion.

There is also an odd side chance that FC Volendam and Fortuna Sittard may upset the odds and surprise many this season, a chance to battle for a place in the Dutch top flight means high attendees in the ground on match day, which no club would refuse, considering the impotents of finance in clubs these recent years.  The league will be occupied by three reserve teams from Dutch giants – Jong Ajax , Jong PSV and Jong FC Twente. Last season, the PSV youngsters managed to finish ahead of the other two’s ‘B’ teams and ended the season in tenth with a + 5 Goal difference. It is impossible for any of these three sides to gain promotion, due to the fact the clubs already have teams in the top flight.

There is four sides that I believe will struggle to compete in the league this season, they are Almere City , FC Oss , Telstar and Achilles ’29. These sides appear not to have the strength in their squad to compete for any type of silverware or promotion this coming season. All four sides ended the season on a minus goal difference last campaign, and that may not change come the end of the 2015/16 season.

Usually in the Eerste Divisie matches are played on a Friday evening at 7pm (BST) and this weekend is the opening weekend of games in the league.

WHY SHOULD YOU WATCH THE EERSTE DIVISIE 2014/15 SEASON?

– Remember the Dutch legend Jaap Stam?  Well, he will manage Jong Ajax this season as he attempts to bring his experience to the players of future who hope to break into Frank de Boer’s  Ajax side.

– Other popular names such as Ruud Kaiser will manage the FC Den Bosch side, Kaiser coached Dutch stars such as Robin Van Persie , Wesley Sneijder , Nigel de Jong and several other current Dutch internationals as he coached the Dutch in the 2005 European Under-17 Championship.

– Many young stars are loaned out from major clubs in the Netherlands to smaller clubs, where they get the chance to show their qualities and learn their trade

– Not forgetting that the fans and atmosphere each week is not to be forgotten as the crowds for the Dutch first division continues to grow.

WHERE YOU CAN FIND OUT MORE?

Every week here at Total Dutch Football, I will doing a ‘Game of the Week’ feature and weekly round-up for the league so stay tuned for full coverage of the 2014/15 season.

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Week 32 Eredivisie Weekend Wrap-up: Ajax virtually crowned

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League leaders Ajax defeated ADO Den Haag 3-2 to move within one point of clinching the Eredivisie title. Feyenoord are the only side that can mathematically catch the Amsterdammers, however it looks high unlikely as the Rotterdam side will have to hope the defending champions lose their last two games and that they can make up a nine-goal deficit on the way.

Saturday 12th April 2014

Jon Dahl Tomasson’s Roda JC will finish in the bottom three after Saturday’s 3-0 defeat at FC Twente left them eight points adrift of safety with two games to go. The rock-bottom Roda will either be automatically relegated or have to compete for this Eredivisie survival in the relegation play-off. Young Norwegian striker Torgeir Børven scored twice in the opening 26 minutes to virtually cement all three points to Michel Jansen’s side, as former Arsenal youth player Kyle Ebecilio made sure in the second-half.

Seven goals were exchanged in a topsy-turvy contest as SC Cambuur defeated Vitesse 4-3 to ruin Peter Bosz’s men’s chances of an automatic Europa League spot. Full-back Kelvin Leerdam struck first for Vitesse before scoring past his own goalkeeper following Martijn Barto’s equaliser. Although, it was level at half-time as Chelsea loanee Christian Atsu restored parity. Chelsea team-mate Bertrand Traoré put the visitors back in front 11 minutes into the second half but Bartholomew Ogbeche and Barto scored within five minutes of one another to send the Cambuurstadion into raptures.

Go Ahead Eagles need one more point to mathematically secure their Eredivisie status as lost 2-0 to Heerenveen at De Adelaarshorst. Impressive young left-back Joost van Aken nodded Marco van Basten’s side in front in only his second full start for the club. On 76 minutes, Alfred Finnbogason scored Heerenveen’s second after some good work from Bilal Basacikoglu on the right-wing. The goal was the Icelander’s 27th of the Eredivisie campaign.

Sunday 13th April 2014

Frank de Boer’s Ajax defeated Henk Fraser’s ADO Den Haag in a five goal thriller, however, Feyenoord’s 2-0 victory over PSV ensured that Koeman’s men remain six points behind in second place with two rounds of games remaining. If Ajax can clinch at least a point away to Heracles Almelo in a fortnight, they will clinch their fourth successive Eredivisie championship.

Danish midfielder Christian Poulsen gave the league leaders the lead on 35 minutes, although within a minute ADO drew level via Stefano Denswil scoring in his own net to send the sides in at half-time all square.

Second-half goals from Davy Klaassen and Thulani Serero put Ajax 3-1 up with central defender Tom Beugelsdijk scoring a last-minute goal to cut the deficit for ADO. However, it was too late to make an impact when referee Richard Liesveld blew for full-time just moments later

Along with their slim title hopes, Feyenoord maintain their second place with the consolation prize of Champions League qualification well within their grasps. Goals from defensive duo Joris Mathijsen and Daryl Janmaat gave them the win over PSV Eindhoven, who have now suffered three consecutive defeats since Philip Cocu was called out of action after a back operation.

NEC Nijmegen are set to compete relegation play-off in a month’s time although they held AZ Alkmaar to an impressive 1-1 draw that leaves them five points from safety. Dick Advocaat’s side took a second half lead through Nemanja Gudelj’s penalty on 55 minutes but NEC midfielder Kevin Conboy netted three minutes from time to secure a valuable point.

Fellow relegation contenders RKC Waalwijk played out a 1-1 draw with PEC Zwolle and now are three points off safety. RKC striker Daniel De Ridder scored just before the hour mark, but his goal was cancelled out by PEC’s Mateusz Klich just nine minutes later.

FC Utrecht will play Eredivisie football next season after they eased their relegation worries thanks to first-half goals from Jacob Mulenga and Juan Agudelo that earned Jan Wouters’ side a 2-1 victory over Heracles. The visitors saw Mikhail Rosheuvel hit back on 64 minutes and defender Bart Schenkeveld was dismissed with five minutes remaining to halt any ideas of a draw for the Almelo side.

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