Sparta Rotterdam could not lift themselves out of the bottom three after a 1-1 draw against Heerenveen in Het Kasteel.

Heerenveen had the first big chance of the clash as Thom Haye smacked a strike against the crossbar. Sydney van Hooijdonk netted the rebound but was clearly in an offside position and the goal was ruled out.

In the 34th minute, Sparta were awarded a penalty after a lengthy VAR check on a handball from Remi Kaib. Lennart Thy took the penalty but saw his effort saved by Erwin Mulder.

Early in the second half, Thy went down in the box, and Sparta were awarded another penalty. This time Vito van Crooy took it and fired the home side into the lead.

However, the lead was short-lived as Heerenveen equalised in the 67th minute when Nick Bakker played in Amin Sarr and the attacker calmly slotted the ball in.

The game ended 1-1 with Anthony Musaba’s calls for a penalty before the end going in deaf ears.

The point means Sparta are 16th and one point from safety, while Heerenveen is 12th.

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