Its round three of the Eredivisie this weekend and Michael Statham continues to provide his preview and predictions for each match.

eredFriday, August 21

Groningen v Excelsior

Groningen have the makings of a top 5 side thanks to their strong front-line, but have so far failed to get going, despite a good showing in the JC Schaal.

Excelsior will present a much better opportunity to pick up 3 points after facing Twente and PSV in their first two games. Although the visitors will have confidence after a 2-2 draw with AZ and will also hope to pick a hole in a defence that has now lost Eric Botteghin.

Prediction: 1-0

Saturday, August 22

Roda JC v De Graafschap

Two of the three promoted sides meet in Kerkrade on Saturday to contest what could be a very early six-pointer. Early signs suggest both of these sides will be in the bottom three battle for much of the season, especially De Graafschap, whose defending against Zwolle was amateurish.

Roda have been the better of the two sides based on the first two matches so I think they’ll win fairly comfortably if De Superboeren’s poor defending continues.

Prediction: 3-1

Heerenveen v PSV

This time last season Heerenveen beat PSV 1-0, Daley Sinkgraven with the winning goal. Lots has changed since then.

A win and a draw represent a good return for Heerenveen so far this term, however their first big test of the season awaits. I can’t see them causing as many problems as they did in that success last season, Mitchell te Vrede does not carry the same quality as Mark Uth possessed.

PSV are yet to show their title winning play of last season but that was to be expected after their summer outgoings. Their replacements have bags of potential but it will take time. Hector Moreno is a superb addition to the defence.

Prediction: 0-2

Cambuur v Heracles

I think Cambuur could surprise a few this season, including myself, as I tipped them to struggle.

They have played well in their first two games of the season and definitely deserved a point against Feyenoord. The disallowed goal should have stood and highlights the need for goalline technology in the Eredivisie.

Heracles are another who I thought would struggle but were free-flowing in attack against NEC. I’m still not sure their defence is strong enough to win tighter games against teams higher in the table but Heracles certainly have some talent in attack.

Prediction: 2-0

Sunday, August 23

PEC Zwolle v Twente

After all the speculation of another attacking midfielder arriving to replace Jesper Drost, Zwolle started youngster Wouter Marinus against De Graafschap. He played well and even scored a goal, perhaps putting end to speculation over a potential transfer for Brazilian Gustavo Hebbling.

Twente require immediate attention. A tumultuous summer saw financial problems destroy their squad and replacements haven’t gelled yet – a 1-4 home defeat to ADO showed that. Hakim Ziyech could be next to leave (for Wolfsburg) which would be disastrous for Twente. The defending must improve first of all, otherwise Alfred Schreuder’s time as manager could be coming to an end.

Prediction: 2-1

AZ v Willem II

AZ poorly gave away three goals in Romania on Thursday after already conceding 5 goals so far in their league campaign. Until last February, AZ had a solid defence but towards the end of the season it deteriorated, at one point they conceded 19 goals in 5 games.

Following a good point against Vitesse, Willem II were disappointing in their 3-0 defeat in the Amsterdam ArenA. Their tough start to the season continues in Alkmaar, but I think Willem II will pinch a point, Zivkovic to score.

Prediction: 1-1

ADO Den Haag v Utrecht

ADO’s new frontline isn’t vintage but it does contain lots of experience and underrated talent. Ruben Schaken, Edouard Duplan and Mike Havenaar will create and score lots of goals between them this season along with Roland Alberg’s contribution. Their big win in Eschede is an exciting sign of things to come.

Sebastien Haller was so dangerous against Heerenveen last weekend, his quality is developing nicely in a side that is playing to his strengths. His style is similar to that of Christian Benteke.

Haller has been linked with a move away, Sunderland and Brentford are two English clubs that are interested. Utrecht will not want to lose their new star striker, but I also don’t want him to leave the Eredivisie yet as I think his development will be bettered from another season or two playing for Utrecht.

Prediction: 2-2

NEC v Ajax

Ajax managed to win ugly for once in the Europa League on Thursday after narrowly beating Jablonec. Whilst that is a good skill for a team to have, Ajax struggled to create many real chances against the Czech side.

NEC so far appear to have a problem in creating chances. 14 attempts in two games is not a great stat, especially in such an attacking league.

NEC will make it difficult for Ajax but they won’t have enough to stifle De Boer’s men.

Prediction: 0-3

Feyenoord v Vitesse

This will be van Bronckhorst’s first big test as Feyenoord manager against a top 5 side. Two wins from two games looks positive but both have been tight and involved some luck.

Vitesse are definitely still a work in progress, but 4 points from 6 is a decent return. The Chelsea loanees have yet to make their mark, Izzy Brown in particular has disappointed me. Although his best position is as a striker, not on the right wing. Abiola Dauda played a limited role in pre-season and was deemed surplus to requirements this summer by Peter Bosz. However I think he still has a role to play and his goal last weekend justified that.

Prediction: 2-1

Think you can predict the scores better than Michael? Add your predictions in the comments box below.

Michael Statham (679 Posts)

Writer/interviewer/YouTuber for Football-Oranje. Massive Dutch football fan from the UK. Follow me @EredivisieMike & subscribe to Football-Oranje on YouTube.