Groningen started 2017 in fine form as they comfortably dispatched Heracles Almelo.

The visitors opened the scoring on the half-hour mark with Alexander Sørloth latching onto a mistake in the Heracles defence before playing Mimoun Mahi in on goal and the winger lifted the ball past Bram Castro.

Three minutes later it was 2-0 as Desevio Payne fired a strike from the edge of the box into the bottom corner and before the break Sørloth capitalised on mayhem in the Heracles area to fire in a third.

Groningen took their foot off the gas in the second half but Heracles couldn’t mount a comeback and four minutes before the end Mahi netted his second from close range. Daryl Van Mieghem gave the home crowd something to cheer in injury time with a consolation.

The victory lifts Groningen to ninth while Heracles sit one place behind.

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