NEC Nijmegen earned a precious point in their bid for survival as they held AZ to a 1-1 draw at the AFAS Stadion.

conboy necNEC started the game on the backfoot, but the two best chances of the opening twenty minutes fell to their striker Geoffrey Castillion, who saw his sliding effort roll just wide before the forward powered through the AZ defence and forced Esteban into a smart save.

AZ dominated the possession, but they could not find the opening goal before half time, as Jeffrey Gouweleeuw headed over from yards out, while Nick Viergever could not get his volley on target with the goal gaping. Two minutes into the second half, Nemanja Gudelj came within inches of giving AZ the lead with his shot from outside the box coming back off the post.

The opening goal finally came on 55 minutes when AZ were awarded a penalty for a handball, and Gudelj made no mistake from the penalty spot to make it 1-0 for the home side.

AZ continued to dominate but could not kill the game off, with substitute Denni Avdic producing one of the misses of the season from a few yards out.

NEC made the home side pay for their misses as Kevin Conboy headed in a equaliser in the 87th minute. AZ could have won the game deep into stoppage time but Roy Beerens effort crashed off the crossbar, and the winger could not connect with the rebound.

The point means NEC are now five points from safety with only two games remaining, while AZ sit 7th.

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