Calvin Stengs made his long-awaited Eredivisie return as AZ Alkmaar defeated De Graafschap 1-0 in the AFAS Stadion.

For the first time since the opening day of last season, Calvin Stengs started for AZ Alkmaar as John van den Brom turned to the young winger in order to end a three-game losing streak in the league.

AZ dominated possession as De Graafschap sat deep but the hosts couldn’t find a way through. Mats Seuntjens and Oussama Idrissi went close, while Stengs put a shot wide.

Stengs was eventually withdrawn just after the hour mark as Van den Brom threw on Bjorn Johnsen. Fifteen minutes from time, AZ finally made the breakthrough as Suentjens fired a powerful strike past Hidde Jurjus off the post.

Idrissi nearly made it 2-0 moments later after an excellent pass from Seuntjens but the winger couldn’t finish off a fine attack. In the end, it didn’t matter as AZ held on for a victory which moved them from ninth to seventh. De Graafschap stay 15th.

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