Every week in the 2023/24 season, Football-Oranje’s Michael Statham gives you his previews and predictions for each Dutch Eredivisie round.

  • by Michael Statham
  • Follow Michael on X @EredivisieMike
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Saturday, 25th November

Excelsior v Feyenoord

Excelsior continue to be a team that are performing above expectations this season, but we know that if Feyenoord turn up, then the three points will be theirs in this Rotterdam derby.

There are some crucial weeks ahead with Feyenoord needing to stay in touch with PSV at the top of the Eredivisie, and reaching the Champions League knockouts also a priority. There will be no resting of players here at kick-off, and I expect full focus from the visitors.

0-2

Heerenveen v Fortuna Sittard

Despite Heerenveen’s struggles this season, the packed nature of the Eredivisie mid-table means that after a 1-3 win at Vitesse last time out, things feel more positive again for head coach Kees van Wonderen. They do look better, such is confidence.

Fortuna were long overdue a win and they got that two weeks ago against Heracles in some style. A two-week break is almost like a reset of the form prior to it. At home, I think the hosts will have a renewed vigour. Magic from the likes of Sahraoui may make the difference.

2-1

FC Twente v PSV

Three draws from Twente’s last four are no drama for a team still having a very, very good season, but I think fans will be pleased to have Joshua Brenet back from injury to slot back in at right-back.

This is PSV’s biggest test this season so far. Some big away matches are coming up. Winning all of their league matches thus far has been an incredible achievement and it even means they can afford to lose or draw one or two of their away games at Twente, AZ or Feyenoord. Like Feyenoord, PSV have a title challenge and the top two of their CL group in their sights. We have seen from their performances in Europe that their open style and individual errors from centre-back André Ramalho have been costly — though I must note how impressive the Brazilian was in the 1-0 win over Lens.

Twente have already beaten Feyenoord in Enschede, and I know that Joseph Oosting will have been cooking up a plan for the last two weeks. Both teams to score in an entertaining clash.

1-1

PEC Zwolle v RKC Waalwijk

The vibes are definitely more positive in Zwolle after their recent promotion and position just inside the top half. RKC continue to struggle on, having picked up a few wins, but the rest defeats. It is great to see Etienne Vaessen back in goal, and he will be busy again. I was impressed by PEC’s last win at home; it showed me that they can adapt their defensive style to put away teams when they are expected to have more of the ball. I am backing RKC to get a point here though; I don’t see this one being a classic.

1-1

Ajax v Vitesse Arnhem

Ajax’s upward trajectory continues, but they are still a long way off what we expect from their quality. The rebuilding job continues as they take a Vitesse side who hired a new interim head coach, Edward Sturing. Phillip Cocu had a tough job on his hands, predominantly because he could never get the right solution up front — yes, there is a lack of quality in these positions, but playing defenders in midfield and midfielders in attack was never going to yield excitement.

2-0

Sunday, 26th November

Almere City v Heracles Almelo

Having seen both of these sides in action recently, you have to back Almere to continue their purple patch. Before the international break, Heracles had an embarrassing Dutch Cup exit and then heavy defeats back-to-back in the league. Almere are just too keen at the moment and really effective on the counter attack.

1-0

AZ Alkmaar v FC Volendam

Volendam are too leaky to reasonably be expected to keep out AZ. Hopefully Pascal Jansen’s men are rejuvenated by the two-week break because it just felt like the wheels were beginning to come off a little. The season is long, but I am doubtful of AZ’s progression in the Conference League at present, and Twente look in pole position to reach the top three this season.

2-0

NEC Nijmegen v Go Ahead Eagles

These are two sides I heavily fancied for a good season before a ball was kicked. NEC show this potential in fits and starts but they have never consistently been able to look good in attack and defence simultaneously in games. Jasper Cillessen, former Netherlands number 1, has been criticised again for some sloppy mistakes. Does his spot come under threat again?

Go Ahead finally got their first away win in seven months. They are performing fantastically this season (particularly at home); some of their individuals are kicking on all at the same time in a cohesive unit that like to play good football. I think this will be a good watch and I am finding it hard to call which way this will swing.

11

Sparta Rotterdam v FC Utrecht

Sparta are a bettor’s nightmare. They give every team in the Eredivisie a good game, but lose sometimes where they really shouldn’t. How does this one go then against an Utrecht side who continue to struggle even with Ron Jans looking as though he had turned a corner with the perennial underperformers? Really, Jans still has a lot of work left to do, but he has at least got them through four games unbeaten. I think Utrecht will just edge it.

0-1

How has Michael got on so far?

Week 1: 4/9 results

Week 2: 7/9 results and 2 correct scores

Week 3: 4/5 results (reduced due to teams in Europe not playing)

Week 4: 2/9 results

Week 5: 5/9 results and 1 correct score

Week 6: 6/9 results

Week 7: 5/8 results and 1 correct score

Week 8: 5/9 results and 1 correct score

Week 9: 5/9 results and 2 correct scores

Week 10: 4/8 results and 2 correct scores

Week 11: 5/9 results and 1 correct score

Week 12: 1+?/9 results




Michael Statham (797 Posts)

Writer/interviewer/YouTuber for Football-Oranje. Massive Dutch football fan from the UK. Follow me @EredivisieMike & subscribe to Football-Oranje on YouTube.