Groningen’s poor start to the campaign continued on Saturday as they slumped to a 2-0 defeat in Rotterdam to Excelsior.

exce jjGroningen’s defence was pulled apart at will last weekend by Feyenoord and Ernest Faber’s side looked all over the place again against Excelsior, who took the lead after only two minutes with Jurgen Mattheij heading in Ryan Koolwijk’s cross.

Excelsior went into the game on the back of the victory at Twente last week and they looked confident as they ran at the Groningen defence again and again. Sergio Padt had to make a fingertip block to stop Kevin Vermeulen making it 2-0 before the break, while Rob Albers fired wide after failing to control the ball in a promising position. At the other end Tom Muyters had to make a fine stop to deny Jesper Drost, but the away side were barely in the game and Faber pulled Hedwiges Maduro to the side after only 27 minutes after being unimpressed with his midfield.

Groningen improved after the break and they pushed for an equaliser, with Mattheij lucky not to score an own goal with his header flying past the post. In the final minute Groningen flung Padt up for a corner and the goalkeeper saw a header come back off the post. From the resulting counter Excelsior killed the game with Kevin Vermuelen firing into an empty net from close to the halfway line.

The victory maintains a perfect record for Excelsior, while Groningen have plenty of work to do after two defeats and not a single goal scored.

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