Every week in the 2023/24 season, Football-Oranje’s Michael Statham gives you his previews and predictions for each Dutch Eredivisie round.

  • by Michael Statham
  • Follow Michael on X @EredivisieMike
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Friday, 26th January

PEC Zwolle v Vitesse Arnhem

PEC Zwolle are favourites here at home despite being a newly promoted team. Vitesse have been so poor this season that it will take a scrappy, lucky game for them to come away with anything.


Saturday, 27th January

RKC Waalwijk v Sparta Rotterdam

In the Eredivisie table, there are some gaps opening up. The bottom three and the midtable pack are separated by five points, whilst there is a five-point gap between the midtable teams and the European playoff teams. RKC sit in the teams in relegation trouble and Sparta within the top eight.

Like I’ve mentioned before, Sparta have some very good players, but there are some that are also of a very low quality for the Eredivisie: van der Kust, de Guzman, Brym, plus the back-up options at centre-back — Sparta need Eerdhuijzen and Vriends back in defence. The Rotterdammers have been better away from home, but I think this might be an opportunity for RKC to close the gap to safety.


PSV v Almere City

By the time Saturday rolls round, PSV will have played their big Dutch Cup match against Feyenoord. That should have little bearing on this game though. I watched PSV drop their first points of the season last weekend at Utrecht. At home to Almere, there should be no issues, but it was clear to see they were missing some key players: Veerman, Lozano, Lang to name a few. I don’t think Malik Tillman had a good game either at Utrecht; either Peter Bosz needs to figure out his best position in the starting XI, or somebody else needs to take his place.


Heracles Almelo v Ajax

Even with a new manager in Erwin van de Looi, you can see that Heracles will do well to stay up this season. Against resurgent-yet-youthful Ajax, you can see there being a mighty difference in quality, and we might even get to see some of Jordan Henderson. I’m backing Brian Brobbey to keep up his excellent form.


Excelsior v FC Utrecht

Excelsior finally picked up a win after months without one. Both of these sides love a draw — in fact, they both have the most in the league. Utrecht have remained unbeaten now for a few months in the Eredivisie, including that impressive draw with PSV last time out.


Sunday, 28th January

Heerenveen v AZ Alkmaar

Heerenveen are one of the mid-table teams I mentioned earlier in this article. They have not kept up their consistency for very long and therefore they are bobbing up and down the mediocre pack.

New AZ manager Maarten Martens would have been hoping for a more spectacular introduction to his promotion from the reserve side. Pascal Jansen had to go, even with his better-than-average stats in charge of the club. You could see the team on the pitch was crying out for a new impetus.

In AZ’s last 15 games in all competitions, there have only been 5 wins: two cup scrape-throughs against amateur clubs, a 1-0 win over Mostar in Europe, and two home wins in the Eredivisie over bottom-half opposition.

Therefore, two fairly average teams that will slug it out on Sunday lunch-time. I think there will be a moment of quality to win the game either way.


Go Ahead Eagles v NEC Nijmegen

This is a repeat of the Dutch Cup match only recently. NEC came out on top in Nijmegen 2-1. Lately we have had a number of these ‘sub-top’ games between the likes of Sparta, Go Ahead, NEC and Ajax — the sides chasing a Europa Conference League (or higher) spot for next season.

At the start of the season, I waxed lyrical about NEC, and then they went on to struggle for months until a resurgence that now has them looking to reach a cup final and finish in the top six. They have picked up 13 points from the last five which included games against Twente, Feyenoord and AZ, and you can see they are getting players back to full fitness, playing consistently together.


Feyenoord v FC Twente

Second plays third. We should be safe in predicting Feyenoord to go on and finish second this season, but can Twente cling onto third and claim a Champions League qualification ticket? Because of injuries and suspensions, they have struggled at centre-back. Until they get their best XI back, I think Twente will continue to drop points. The gap to Ajax will close in a matter of weeks, for me. I think Feyenoord will dominate and Twente will need to hope they can have a much stronger defensive performance plus hit their hosts on the break using the pace of Manfred Ugalde.


FC Volendam v Fortuna Sittard

Volendam have looked just short of the quality required to stay in the Eredivisie; however, a home match against mid-table opposition provides the chance to turn things around and mount a good run of form. The home side have picked up a couple of players so far this month, and they are trying to slot them into the 5-3-2 that they hope will make them tougher to beat.


How has Michael got on so far?

Week 1: 4/9 results

Week 2: 7/9 results and 2 correct scores

Week 3: 4/5 results (reduced due to teams in Europe not playing)

Week 4: 2/9 results

Week 5: 5/9 results and 1 correct score

Week 6: 6/9 results

Week 7: 5/8 results and 1 correct score

Week 8: 5/9 results and 1 correct score

Week 9: 5/9 results and 2 correct scores

Week 10: 4/8 results and 2 correct scores

Week 11: 5/9 results and 1 correct score

Week 12: 4/9 results

Week 13: 6/9 results and 1 correct score

Week 14: 2/9 results

Week 15: 5/9 results

Week 16: 3/9 results

Week 17: 3/9 results

Week 18: 2/8 results

Michael Statham (808 Posts)

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