Every week in the 2017/18 season, Football-Oranje writer Michael Statham offers you his predictions for each Eredivisie round, accompanied by betting tips from Betsmobil’s Dutch football tipster Crypto. Michael competes against a different special guest each week. This time, it’s Jeroen Thijssen, the Head Researcher for Dutch football in the computer game Football Manager.

  • By Michael Statham
  • Follow Michael on Twitter @EredivisieMike
  • Follow Crypto on Twitter @FcCrypto
  • Follow Jeroen on Twitter @FM_Nederland

Saturday 23rd September

Willem II v Heerenveen

Michael’s prediction: The front two of Fran Sol and Etien Velikonja were effective in getting the goals for Willem II last weekend. Is that a cause for excitement for fans? Or does it show just how poor Roda were?

If Erwin van de Looi still wishes to play entertaining football, he’ll be able to do it against Heerenveen. However, the Frisians will simply try to be better at knocking the ball around. Arber Zeneli is on form, but I can see a draw here, which extends Heerenveen’s unbeaten run. 1-1

Jeroen‘s prediction: There are a few tricky games this matchround. Willem II have not begun this campaign rather well, and sc Heerenveen find themselves comfortably unbeaten in fourth place. Heerenveen have not won in the past 7 meetings, and I think this will not happen this meeting. Although Heerenveen have a much better side, Willem II will employ a 3-5-2/5-3-2 strategy and keep the Frisians to a draw. 1-1

Crypto tip: Both teams to score – yes.

Heracles v Roda JC

Michael’s prediction: Heracles should put on a dominant display, as they do so well at home. Usually I’d back them to win comfortably, but football is a weird game and I’m predicting Roda to pick up an unlikely draw. 1-1

Jeroen’s prediction: After the Willem II result, I think we can count Roda JC as the favourite to go down. Heracles are generally quite stellar at home, I do feel Heracles are a bit weaker than last season, but they will most likely finish mid table again and shouldn’t have too many issues with Roda. 2-0

Crypto tip: Under 3.5 goals.

Feyenoord v NAC Breda

Michael’s prediction: The odds will be extremely short for a Feyenoord win but barring a miracle, how can you back against them?

NAC have improved massively already since rejoining the Eredivisie and their win over Groningen will have done them the world of good in the long term. 3-0

Jeroen‘s prediction: May 21st 2009. The only time in 49 meetings NAC have beaten Feyenoord in De Kuip. It will take a massive upset for the Breda side to beat Feyenoord, normally this should be an easy home win, I expect Feyenoord to bounce back from the unlucky PSV loss and profit from the wasteful NAC defense. 3-0

Crypto tip: Feyenoord -1.5 Asian Handicap.

ADO Den Haag v Sparta

Michael’s prediction: ADO deserved a point against Ajax for the effort they put in to turn around a performance that was originally heading for disaster. I think they’ve got the fight in them to win this one.

This is my pick for ‘don’t watch of the week’. Sparta will also want to keep this game tight, but will be mindful of ADO’s record of only one clean sheet in the last thirteen Eredivisie games. 2-1

Jeroen‘s prediction: ADO have won the previous editions, and seem to be in decent enough form to beat the Rotterdam side at home. They’ll need to, to steer away from relegation playoff danger. They’ll have confidence on their side after beating Willem II away and holding Ajax to a draw. Lex Immers is doubtful, but Erik Falkenburg could come on as a replacement to hurt his former team. 2-0

Crypto tip: Draw no bet – ADO.


Sunday 24th September

Utrecht v PSV

Michael’s prediction: It was an uncharacteristic performance from Utrecht as they were smashed by Twente. They will train hard over the week to ready themselves for the visit of PSV.

The Eindhoven side were poor in their 1-0 win over Feyenoord. They had a man advantage and yet lost all the second balls in midfield and relied on luck as well as good goalkeeping to keep the clean sheet. That, coupled with the defeat at Heerenveen previously, sign that PSV are in for a tough season.

The result here largely depends how improved Utrecht are. Manager Erik Ten Hag will ensure that this is a very competitive game. 2-1

Jeroen’s prediction: The 4-0 loss at FC Twente has left me completely flabbergasted. How will FC Utrecht bounce back from that offday? PSV have not been particularly impressive, but they are equal on points with the leader. I think Ten Hag will set the team straight and the game has draw written all over. 1-1

Crypto tip: Utrecht -1 Asian Handicap.

Extensive discussion on this weekend’s Eredivisie action in this podcast video!

Ajax v Vitesse

Michael’s prediction: Pressure will be exerted on Marcel Keizer to continue as Ajax manager after his record thus far. An early European exit plus points already dropped at Heracles and ADO can hardly fill fans with confidence considering the squad left from Peter Bosz’s tenure is largely intact.

Ajax have been far more convincing at home though, and you can’t deny that the home side will get plenty of chances and will score at some point.

Can Vitesse earn something? Let’s see how well they can carve open opportunities. Tim Matavz has scored in every league game up until now. It’s up to Milot Rashica and Bryan Linssen to create the chances. I think they’ll just come up short. 2-1

Jeroen’s prediction: Interesting fact, the teams have met each other in Amsterdam 33 times before in the Eredivisie. Never has the result been a draw. Ajax have won the past four editions, and I expect there is a bigger chance of a draw than a Vitesse win. Vitesse will finish Top 7 and qualify for the playoffs for sure as they do have a good team, but the quality Ajax still possesses should see them beat most team at home on individual performance of one or a few key players alone. 2-1

Crypto tip: Both teams to score – yes.

VVV-Venlo v PEC Zwolle

Michael’s prediction: After claiming two late draws in their last two away games, VVV now have another great chance to open the gap to the bottom three further at home to PEC, who themselves have had a very positive start.

Eventually, I think both of these teams, who currently sit in the top half of the table, will finish just below the top half, which is no disgrace to either side. I will back Venlo though to win another match in a close contest. 2-1

Jeroen’s prediction: VVV are, to me, the biggest surprise so far. Maurice Steijn and his men are currently 9th with a very decent 8 points from 5 games. But let’s not forget about PEC Zwolle who have been doing well and are on 10 points. This could be a really interesting matchup, or it could be a snooze fest. I’m hoping for the previous and I’m going for a 4-goal draw. 2-2

Crypto tip: Over 2.5 goals.

Groningen v Twente

Michael’s prediction: Groningen boss Ernest Faber will be hurting after dropping more points to another newly promoted side. The club want to be pushing for the top seven but don’t have the quality to beat teams three or four goals to nil. In response, they play to strengths with a back five, which is by no means ‘watertight’.

Twente’s confidence sapping win over Utrecht is sure to boost them here. They will try to play more open as it suits their players and I wouldn’t be surprised if they end up with more possession than the hosts.

Confidence is a big factor in football. 2-3

Jeroen‘s prediction: This needs the good old Queen & David Bowie Under Pressure tune. The FC Groningen fans are not happy with the style of play or the performance. Neither are the FC Twente fans, although their expectations are a bit lower. I expect the individual quality of Mimoun Mahi, and the great goalkeeping form of Sergio Padt to shine through once again and clinch the victory for the Northerners. 2-1

Crypto tip: Over 2.5 goals.

AZ v Excelsior

Michael’s prediction: Four wins from five for AZ could become five from six if they can put away Excelsior. The away side won’t pull up any trees on Sunday, so this is arguably Alkmaar’s biggest test so far to see if they can take their chances and keep it sensible at the back for a routine win. If they can achieve that then we could start considering John van den Brom’s charges for a push into the top three. 2-1

Jeroen’s prediction: Excelsior haven’t won in Alkmaar in ages. The last time they won was in 1995 and they’ve met ample times since (11 times). AZ have a good side, whereas Excelsior was my initial favourite to go down. They do have a four point lead on Roda JC though, so they’re not all bad. Still, this should be easy pickings for AZ and I expect them to deliver and have an easy Sunday afternoon. 5-0

Crypto tip: AZ -1 Asian Handicap.

Agree/disagree with our predictions and betting tips? Did we win/lose you a fortune? Tweet us!

How have Michael & Crypto done so far?

Crypto’s running success – Hit Rate: 62.96% & Average Odds: 1.65 

Week 1: Michael: 3 results // Crypto: 5W – 3L – 1V (versus PSV-watcher and journalist Rik Elfrink)

Week 2: Michael: 7 results, 2 correct scores // Crypto: 6W – 1L – 2V (versus commentator Paul Thomas Clay)

Week 3: Michael: 6 results, 1 correct score // Crypto: 5W – 2L – 2V (versus [Ajax Daily] writer Alex Moretto)

Week 4: Michael: 4 results, 1 correct score // Crypto: 6W – 2L – 1V (versus Sky journalist Joshua Hayward)

Week 5: Michael: 2 results, 1 correct score // Crypto: W – L – V (versus commentator Richard Connelly)

Michael Statham (795 Posts)

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