We’ve returned from the international break for round nine of the Eredivisie, so Michael Statham continues to give his preview and predictions for each game, along with tips offered through bet365. This weekend features a Derby of the North, a tasty battle in the sub-top of the table and tough matches for the top three.

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Saturday 15th October

           Utrecht v Go Ahead Eagles

The hosts looked improved again against Ajax, despite losing 3-2. Ultimately they were outclassed by their opponent’s frontline for large periods of the game, but they didn’t do too badly.

Go Ahead will play cautiously to try and pick up a point in Utrecht, but must remember the confidence boosting win they picked up last time out over Excelsior, consequently leaping above their opponents of this weekend in the table.

The Eagles have played very much as a team so far this season, although I think the individual qualities of Utrecht’s forwards will get them the win.

Michael’s prediction: 2-1

Tip: Richairo Zivkovic to score at any time 6/4. (Click the bet365 banners to find out more…)

          Sparta v Willem II

Following a flat display in Utrecht, Sparta bounced back with a positive draw against AZ which sees them sitting pretty in eighth.

There’s pressure on two managers in the Eredivisie at the moment: Roda’s Yannis Anastasiou and Willem II boss Erwin van de Looi. He’s overseen a side that has scored only once in their last six games and have only one league win all season – away to Ajax which looks less impressive after a 5-0 drubbing in the cup to the same opponents.

The Tilburgers are making far too many mistakes and I can’t see them suddenly starting to score lots of goals. So it’s tough times for them.

Michael’s prediction: 2-1

         PSV v Heracles

PSV have now fallen seven points behind leaders Feyenoord following more dropped points. Although you should definitely not discount them as favourites to win the league, even now.

The champions still have the best team in the league (on paper) and have the experience of winning the title twice before.

They simply need to win this one. Heracles are a decent team again now that they’ve re-signed a couple of their old stars. They need to start winning more games so they can stop looking over their shoulder, but they will be fine this season.

Michael’s prediction: 2-0

         Groningen v Heerenveen

Groningen look the weaker side coming into the first northern derby of the season. Their thrashing of Utrecht has been followed up by drab football, perhaps because Ernest Faber is still keen on developing a solid, counter-attacking unit. It worked with NEC but he’s still struggling to discover his new team’s potential.

They could do with a couple of Heerenveen’s midfielders. Not only have the Frisians got swashbuckling forwards, Stijn Schaars has added marvellous leadership and steel in the middle of the park.

Form may go slightly out the window for this, but I’ll go for a draw.

Michael’s prediction: 1-1

Tip: Over 2.5 goals is 7/10.

         AZ v Vitesse

The Alkmaarers have been off colour recently. They’ve shipped a few goals and haven’t quite been as free flowing in attack. I think the two weeks off will have made a difference though.

It’s surprising that Vitesse are so close to AZ in the table if you compare the quality of the two sides. A positive for Henk Fraser is the improved attitude of his players in the last match. Captain Guram Kashia said before the season started that the current squad isn’t the highest in quality that he’s ever played with, yet there is some excellent determination.

AZ and Vitesse share ambitions for European qualification, but I’d fancy AZ to be in prime position for that come the end of the campaign.

Michael’s prediction: 2-1

Tip: Get AZ 0.0, -0.5 Asian handicap at 1.675.

Sunday 16th October

         Twente v PEC Zwolle

The game on paper reads seventh versus seventeenth, but I feel PEC have more to offer than that after a first win of the season a fortnight ago.

I think Zwolle will prevent Twente from getting a fourth straight home league win and earn a point.

Michael’s prediction: 1-1

         Excelsior v Roda JC

A 3-0 defeat against Go Ahead Eagles has set Excelsior back a little bit. Players and fans may have become a little optimisitic for the season ahead following a decent start, but now face their relegation rivals from last season in an attempt to extend the gap to the bottom three.

As I mentioned two weeks ago, Roda have been pretty awful of late. I think the manager will be on his way soon. Defensive blunders and a toothless attack have left the Kerkraders in a precarious position.

Michael’s prediction: 1-0

Tip: Under 3 goals at 1.475.

         NEC v Feyenoord

This will be a test to see whether NEC have improved tactically and mentally for another big team visiting Nijmegen.

Last time they faced one of the top three, PSV enjoyed a training session like experience. Peter Hyballa has since gone with an extra midfielder and tightened his side up a little more.

Feyenoord will surely be taking the league campaign one game at a time. As opposed to seeing matches such as this one as a ‘must-win’, players will be concentrating solely on the task at hand – three points.

It’s the kind of mentality that has evaded the Rotterdammers in previous years. Van Bronckhorst seems to have finally found a winning formula.

However, I expect a tight score-line. NEC will fight but the current league leaders have form and confidence on their side.

Michael’s prediction: 1-2

         ADO Den Haag v Ajax

It’s a wonder whether ADO will ever stop the rot. Four successive league defeats does not reflect the capabilities of this squad. A fifth defeat looks on the cards here as Ajax seem hungry for points at the moment.

Peter Bosz looks to be reaping the rewards of his patience and hard-work with his newly assembled squad. They could still improve in defence though, as they do not look comfortable at all with high balls into the box, something which ADO could exploit thanks to their style of play.

Michael’s prediction: 1-3

Tip: Mike Havenaar is 11/5 to score at any time.


Accumulator for all nine winners with a £10 bet returns: £3,720.20

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How have I done so far?

Week 1: 4 results

Week 2: 3 results, 1 correct score

Week 3: 4 results, 1 correct score

Week 4: 6 results, 1 correct score

Week 5: 6 results, 2 correct scores

Week 6: 4 results, 2 correct scores

Week 7: 3 results

Week 8:  7 results, 3 correct scores

Michael Statham (721 Posts)

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