Go Ahead Eagles will be looking to build on an impressive first year back in the Eredivisie as they prepare for the 2014/15 season.

  • By Michael Bell
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go aheFor the first time since 1996, Go Ahead Eagles played Eredivisie football last season, and the Deventer side were a welcome addition to the division, with their nice playing style, and fantastic fan-base. Foeke Booy’s side were determined to avoid relegation, and ended the season safely in 13th place. Now Go Ahead Eagles are hoping to avoid 2nd season syndrome, and establish themselves as a regular among Netherlands elite.

Transfers:

During the summer Go Ahead Eagles lost two of their most impressive players from last season as Jarchinio Antonia moved to Groningen, and Xander Houtkoop signed for ADO Den Haag.  Defender Doke Schmidt also returned to Heerenveen after a loan move.

Incoming have been a number of youngsters from Ajax, with winger Lesley De Sa, and Mickey van der Hart joining on loan, while attacker Nick de Bondt, and Sven Nieuwpoort join on permanent deals. Defender Giliano Wijnaldum comes in from Groningen, striker Alex Schalk from NAC, and impressive young midfielder Peter van Ooijen was snapped up on a free after leaving PSV Eindhoven.

Pre Season:

Go Ahead started pre-season with four wins, beating Terwolde 18-1, LONGA’30 7-0, Voorwarts 6-0, and Excelsior 1-0. Defeats then followed against both Heerenveen and Hapoel Ironi Kiryat Shmona, but they ended preparations with a 2-0 win over Istanbul Basaksehir.

Strongest XI: Van der Hart, Nieuwpoort, Wijnaldum, Vriends, Van der Linden, Van Ooijen, Turuc, Overgoor, De Sa, Kolder, Schalk

Key Players:

Deniz Turuc: Despite a number of clubs showing interest in the 21-year-old midfielder this summer, Go Ahead Eagles have managed to keep Turuc at the club. The Netherlands U21 international, who has Turkish roots was a revelation in the Eredivisie last season, with his classy play in the middle of the park. An excellent passer with a rocket of a shot, Turuc is Go Ahead Eagles star man!

Marnix Kolder: Despite being 33-years-old Kolder was almost an ever present for Go Ahead last season, and helped the club stave of relegation by netting seven goals. About to enter his sixth season in Deventer, Kolder will once again be a major asset for the club with his height, and strong forward play. If he can form a partnership with the more agile Alex Schalk, then goals should follow for the club

Young Player to watch:

Mickey van der Hart: The 20 year-old is highly rated by club Ajax, and is expected to have a big future at the Amsterdam club. With Jasper Cillessen currently Frank de Boer’s number one, Van der Hart has been allowed to leave on loan, and Go Ahead Eagles may have got themselves one of the signings of the summer. This season will give us an insight into just how good Van der Hart is.

Prediction:

Go Ahead Eagles were a great team to watch last season, and i have high hopes for them ahead of the new campaign. The club have made a number of good signings, and if Booy can give the likes of Schalk, Van Ooijen, and De Sa the game time that they crave, Go Ahead should comfortably see off relegation. Possessing such a young defence is a risk though, and their inexperience may stop them from challenging for a top ten spot.

My Prediction: 11th-14th




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