Between four nets, Feyenoord experiences trouble-free evening against RKC
Watch the summary of Feyenoord – RKC Waalwijk
Feyenoord have moved another step closer to their 16th national title. The Rotterdammers enjoyed a virtually trouble-free evening at home against RKC Waalwijk (5-1 win) and can start focusing on the cracker against AS Roma Thursday in the quarterfinals of the Europa League.
The difference between the Rotterdam frontrunner and number two Ajax and number three PSV remains eight points.
The game against RKC could be seen in advance as a potential banana skin for Feyenoord. After all, the club has the cup elimination against Ajax in its legs and will also have had the showdown with AS Roma already in the back of its mind.
Coach Arne Slot wanted to know nothing of “an in-between” against RKC, which held Feyenoord to 2-2 at De Kuip last season. “That might have been true at most if we had ended up in no man’s land in the league, but we are the leaders,” he said beforehand.
Nets around the pitch
It was also the first home game for Feyenoord in which De Kuip was equipped with meters-high nets around the pitch after the events during last Wednesday’s cup game with Ajax.
Feyenoord started the evening with a slip. First, RKC attacker Florian Jozefzoon missed in a promising position and not much later, to the relief of De Kuip, Quilindschy Hartman was on the line to defuse a RKC midfielder Vurnon Anita effort.
Feyenoord had chances in turn through Santiago Gimenez (shot blocked) and Lutsharel Geertruida (shot wide), but an own goal by Yassin Oukili broke the spell for the Rotterdammers. The RKC midfielder saw a Mats Wieffer cross fly into the goal via his leg.
Igor Paixão doubled the score after 31 minutes by scoring in the rebound, after Gimenez’s shot hit the post. Hartman signed for the 3-0 when his cross was not touched by anyone. For a moment, the industrious Gimenez seemed to hit the ball, but the left back got the hit to his name.
Watch reactions from Feyenoord left-back Quilindschy Hartman, Feyenoord coach Arne Slot and RKC Waalwijk coach Joseph Oosting below:
RKC coach Joseph Oosting, who revealed after the game that he had had talks with FC Twente to succeed Ron Jans there, tried to create a turnaround with three fresh forces after halftime (Dario van den Buijs, Thierry Lutonda and Saïd Bakari), but it was Feyenoord who continued to score, led by Gimenez.
The Mexican gave Paixão the 4-0 on a silver platter with a fine header as an assist. With that, Gimenez emerged as man of the match, only the striker lacked a goal. But the goal did come.
Gimenez gets desired goal
Orkun Kökçü set up a demarrage on RKC’s half and gifted Gimenez an unmissable chance: the Mexican slid in the 5-0 (tenth premiership goal), making it the sixth game in a row that Feyenoord have been on target.
Julen Lobete saved the earlier for RKC in the 69th minute, after which the match went out like a candle.