Full review of all the action from round 23 of the Eredivisie which saw saw a number of title challengers slip up.

  • By Leo Walker
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ered psvWith just Feyenoord recording a victory in round 23, the weekend belonged to the Rotterdammers as there title rivals all dropped points. It started on Friday evening when ADO Den Haag, with interim head coach Henk Fraser in charge of his first game, recorded a 0-0 draw at the home of Vitesse. The resilient defence of ADO Den Haag ensured a frustrating evening for the one time league leaders, whose 4th game in a row without a victory has left them now 5 points behind Ajax.

FC Twente were next up in the title race and travelled to the Philips Stadion, home of low on confidence PSV, however with the return of Guus Hiddink in an advisory role moral had picked up slightly. Philip Cocu’s side were once favourites for the 2013/14 Eredivisie title though now they find themselves desperate to obtain a European spot for next season with the title well and truly out of the equation. They did however record an emphatic and entertaining 3-2 victory over FC Twente, a result that never looked in doubt. The resulted inflicted the first defeat in 11 games for FC Twente as they now also find themselves 5 points off the league leaders, with a game in hand however.

Feyenoord concluded the action on Saturday evening when entertaining NEC Nijmegen at De Kuip it what was a goalfest. The visitors positioned in the bottom three were undefeated in 2014 though they eft Rotterdam wth that status removed. They did however take a shock lead when Sören Rieks scored a goal of the round contender from 25 yards though by half time order was restored with Ronald Koeman’s side turning the game on its head to lead 2-1. Graziano Pellè scored his 50th goal for Feyenoord in the second half and Jean-Paul Boëtius continues to put himself in the picture for the World Cup in Brazil with a second half brace. A comfortable 5-1 victory for Feyenoord who are now also 5 points behind Ajax.

The clubs chasing Ajax all find themselves 5 points off the pace, but it could have been 7 had Siem de Jong not skied a volley from 8 yards out into row Z. Ajax took the lead in Zwolle early into the game on Sunday, though PEC Zwolle, who had won their previous three games, showed great character and Guyon Fernandez, on-loan from Feyenoord, did a huge favour for his parent club when equalising after half an hour. A winner for both sides frustratingly never came as Ajax suffered back to back 1-1 draws in their last two away games. As we get down into the business end of the season, Ajax will be hoping FC Twente do not win their game in hand on Wednesday evening away at FC Groningen.

Talking of FC Groningen, they were superb in round 22 when suffering an unlucky 2-1 defeat at Ajax, but at home to sc Heerenveen they were dominated and embarrassingly dealt a 3-1 defeat to their local rivals. Only one side turned up in the Derby of the North, which concluded the weekends action, as Marco van Basten’s side scored 3 goals in 7 minutes, and with FC Groningen down to ten men too, only a football miracle could see them recover. A miracle certainly did not occur despite sc Heerenveen also finding themselves reduced to ten men, and just a mere consolation goal was the reward for a spirited second half performance by the Green and White Army of FC Groningen.

FC Utrecht conceded five goals for the third time in less than 2 months on Sunday, this time at the hands of RKC Waalwijk. The last time RKC scored five goals in a Eredivisie game was back in May of 2012, and the crucial 5-2 victory over FC Utrecht has seen them leapfrog their opponents in 13th with Jan Wouters side disappointing season continuing as they lie in 14th just three points above the bottom three. Incredibly with just 11 minutes remaining the score was 1-1, however a 5 goal bonanza and a missed penalty followed in what was an incredible finish. The bottom three consists of ADO Den Haag, NEC Nijmegen, both on 21 points and Roda JC in 16th. Jon Dahl Tomasson has a relegation battle on his hands with his Roda JC side as they suffered a 2-0 defeat on Saturday evening at NAC Breda with what was their third successive loss whilst the victory for NAC has seen them rise into the top half.

Just above the bottom three is last seasons Eerste Divisie Champions, SC Cambuur who on Sunday suffered last minute heartbreak at the Polman Stadion, home of Heracles Almelo. On the road SC Cambuur have yet to record a victory this season and were minutes away from ending their drought but Elvis Manu’s third goal in five games for the visitors was cancelled out in the 89th minute by the unpredictable Heracles. Their promotion compatriots, Go Ahead Eagles continue to look over their shoulders as to what is happening below them as they bid to remain in the Eredivisie for at least another season also. They have put themselves in a strong position to do just that and avoid the bottom three as they recorded a 2-1 victory over AZ Alkmaar on Saturday evening and as there now on 28 points they lie impressively in 12th.

Leo Walker (36 Posts)