Every week in the 2021/22 season, Football-Oranje’s Michael Statham gives you his previews and predictions for each Dutch Eredivisie round.

  • by Michael Statham
  • Follow Michael on Twitter @EredivisieMike
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Friday, 11th March

Cambuur v Ajax

Earlier in the season, Ajax thrashed Cambuur 9-0 in Amsterdam. That is because of Cambuur’s willingness to attack. Their style of play went on to earn them a spot comfortably in the top half of the table; Cambuur were winning more than they were losing. That was until a run of one win in nine league games, that now sees them clinging onto the final Europa Conference League play-off ticket. Should Henk de Jong’s men finish in eighth, that would be an amazing achievement, but his side have definitely lost their mojo in recent months, and they didn’t even have a shot on target against Twente last Sunday.

Ajax have their mammoth Champions League tie coming up just days after this fixture. In their last league match, they required a last Dusan Tadic penalty to squeeze past RKC Waalwijk 3-2, despite having 73% possession and having 39 shots in the game. Yet again, Erik Ten Hag needs to sort out a defence that plays too high up the pitch. They have conceded six goals in the last four games, which took them seventeen games to concede six before that. Clearly something has not been carefully monitored in the tactics lately, because even RKC were able to have joy on the counter attack where there seems to be only one or two players left back with dangerous strikers on the half-way line.

Ajax need to be more streetwise here, because if they are, they will win comfortably. 1-3

Saturday, 12th March

Sparta Rotterdam v Go Ahead Eagles

How agonising for Sparta last Friday that they were on the brink of a rare three points away at Vitesse, only for crowd trouble to end the match early during stoppage time. They defended resolutely, as I predicted, but they were fortunate to escape with what would have been a clean sheet too. Can they follow that improved performance up with a winnable home game against Go Ahead?

Last week, the Eagles from Deventer had an intense week of home games, where they would have been relieved for seven days of rest and training. A win over Ajax was followed by a narrow cup defeat to PSV and a good draw against Utrecht, but you could see they were exhausted in the final minutes of the latter, and their home support was crucial to their alleviated level of performances.

Sparta have kept the tied fewest home clean sheets this season, yet Go Ahead have one of the worst expected goals scored stats in the Eredivisie away from home. Sparta’s rear-guard action is likely to stifle the likes of Inigo Cordoba, and produce a game low on goals, with high stakes for the home team to get a result. 0-0

FC Groningen v NEC Nijmegen

I’m expecting this to be a low-scoring game. Groningen pulled off an impressive defensive performance to come away a draw from Feyenoord – making it eight from nine games where a bet of under 3.5 goals would have won in their matches. NEC haven’t scored more than one goal in a game since this fixture occurred in the Dutch Cup back in January.

This is a fixture between two teams eying a spot in the top eight of the Eredivisie, which brings a spot in the end-of-season Europa Conference League play-offs.

Lately, Groningen have risen up the table, and they have looked a much better side than at the end of 2021 when it seemed Danny Buijs would never be able to get it right with his young side. A positive result for the home side is likely, despite NEC having the seventh best away record in the division (compared to the worst at home) – they have won only once in the last seven. 2-1

RKC Waalwijk v Heerenveen

The relegation battle is intensifying, with only a few results capable of changing everyone’s expectations over who goes down. This one is between RKC, who have been hovering above the drop zone for much of the season, and Heerenveen, who probably still don’t quite see themselves as part of this relegation picture.

Coached by Ole Tobiasen until the end of the season, Heerenveen picked up some wins around the middle of the season which were arguably undeserved (under ex-manager Jonny Jansen) and now a bad run of one draw and seven losses sees them dropping down the rankings. A win for Waalwijk may induce panic amongst Frisian supporters in a season seemingly going from bad to worse. New signings Sydney van Hooijdonk and Amin Sarr are yet to strike a partnership together; both seem to be very similar styles, and Sarr has been forced out into an uncomfortable wide role.

I have been far more impressed with RKC in 2022 because they have been punching above their weight with an excellent away record, which nearly saw them take a point from Ajax last weekend. Their forward players have a sprinkling of quality, and that could be important again here. 1-1

Sunday, 13th March

Fortuna Sittard v Willem II

Another relegation six-pointer for Fortuna after last weekend’s defeat to PEC Zwolle, which makes it five defeats from seven. Meanwhile, Willem II’s run has extended to one win in nineteen.

In the week, the visitors sacked Fred Grim. I was surprised that Grim was given so much patience by the Willem II board given the season they have had. At the moment, they remain above the dotted line, but I don’t see that lasting for long.

Last time for the Tilburgers, they were controlling the 0-0 draw with Heerenveen and creating several more chances than they have been. That gives me less confidence in Fortuna getting the big win that they need. I do still think this will be a tense, low-scoring game. Under 2.5 goals would have won six of the last seven times for Willem II.

Fortuna have the greater quality and playing at home is a big advantage again with home crowds now back in full swing. 2-0

Heracles Almelo v Vitesse Arnhem

Heracles are unbeaten at home in the last five, and they face a Vitesse side who were spirited in their Europa Conference League defeat to Roma. Riechedly Bazoer returned for Vitesse, and it would be good for him to start on Sunday in order to inject some fresh legs into the side after their mammoth effort on Thursday. 2-1

FC Utrecht v PSV

Utrecht’s performance levels have definitely picked up again over recent matches. They always raise their game for the visit of any traditional top three side. PSV have been very shaky defensively again: it is now no clean sheet in six. Their 4-4 draw with Copenhagen on Thursday showed some decent creativity around the opposition box (Cody Gakpo in particular looking dangerous) but there were some big lapses in concentration where the ball was gifted to their Danish opponents. I think PSV will have the goals to win again…just. 1-2

PEC Zwolle v Feyenoord

After disappointing in their defeat at Heracles, PEC Zwolle showed their second-half-of-the-season spirit to beat Fortuna last time out and lift themselves off the bottom of the table. I think this will be a tricky game for Feyenoord because of that spirit, but Arne Slot’s men were very convincing in their 2-5 thrashing of Partizan Belgrade, showing that when there is more space for them to play in, they take full advantage. Zwolle will be more rigid than Partizan. 1-2

AZ Alkmaar v FC Twente

Fourth plays fifth in an exciting Sunday evening encounter. In terms of the league, AZ are hot on the heels of Feyenoord; however, the 2-1 loss on Thursday to Norwegian side Bodo/Glimt wasn’t their best football, even if the last-minute penalty that defeated them was not a foul. For three games now, after an unbeaten run of 19, AZ haven’t been at their best. At such a crucial stage, they face being out of the cup and Europe within three weeks.

As for Twente, they have only had to concentrate on the Eredivisie. I think they’re not running out of steam lately either; they look like they’re still improving. In fact, they have only had one league defeat in fourteen. The Tukkers have been creating lots of chances, and perhaps they are guilty of not scoring enough of them. I fancy Twente to get a positive result. 0-1

How has Michael done so far?

Week 1: 4/9 results | 5/9 betting tips

Week 2: 4/8 results | 6/8 betting tips

Week 3: 5/9 results | 6/9 betting tips

Week 4: 4/8 results | 5/8 betting tips

Week 5: 5/9 results | 7/9 betting tips

Week 6: 4/9 results and 1 correct score | 8/9 betting tips

Week 7: 5/9 results and 1 correct score | 7/9 betting tips

Week 8: 6/9 results and 1 correct score | 6/9 betting tips

Week 9: 2/9 results | 3/8* betting tips *-one void

Week 10: 4/9 results and 1 correct score | 6/9 betting tips

Week 11: 5/9 results | 4/9 betting tips

Week 12: 4/9 results | 4/9 betting tips

Week 13: 5/9 results and 2 correct scores | 5/9 betting tips

Week 14: 5/9 results | 5/9 betting tips

Week 15: 4/9 results | 6/9 betting tips

Week 16: 2/9 results and 1 correct score | 5/9 betting tips

Week 17: 5/9 results | 7/9 betting tips

Week 18: 6/9 results and 2 correct scores | 8/9 betting tips

Week 19: 3/9 results and 2 correct scores | 5/9 betting tips

Week 20: 3/9 results and 1 correct score | 2/9 betting tips

Week 21: 7/9 results and 2 correct scores | 6/9 betting tips (click Eredivisie on here to see my betting tips)

Week 22: 4/9 results | 4/9 betting tips (click Eredivisie on here to see my betting tips)

Week 23: 5/8* results and 2 correct scores | 5/8* betting tips *game postponed (click Eredivisie on here to see my betting tips)

Week 24: 5/9 results and 1 correct score | 6/9 betting tips (click Eredivisie on here to see my betting tips)

Week 25: 7/8* results and 1 correct score | 5/8* betting tips *game suspended (click Eredivisie on here to see my betting tips)




Michael Statham (671 Posts)

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