AZ Alkmaar returned to winning ways in the Eredivisie with a hard fought 2-1 win at Heerenveen.

After defeats to Sparta Rotterdam and Willem II in their last two league games, AZ headed to Friesland looking to get their title challenge back on track. Thomas Ouwejan returned to the starting eleven in place of the missing Own Wijndal, while Jens Odgaard started again for Heerenveen.

Both sides traded chances early on with Odgaard messing up a good chance before Dani de Wit and Fredrik Midtso went close at the other end.

With ten minutes to go until half-time, De Wit gave AZ the lead after finding himself with the ball in front of Warner Hahn.

The Heerenveen stopper had to make a good save to deny Myron Boadu early in the second half as AZ pushed for a second. However, it was the hosts who netted in the 69th minute, through Chidera Ejuke, who raced onto an excellent pass by Hicham Faik before firing past Marco Bizot.

AZ restored their lead within four minutes when the ball fell well for Boadu after a corner and the striker was clinical from close range.

Ejuke put an excellent chance for the equaliser wide while at the other end, Midtso failed to kill the game off. In the end, AZ held on for the three points which moves them to within three of Ajax at the top. Heerenveen are 9th.




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