PEC sure of promotion after draw at Almere – Cambuur heading for negative club record
Thanks for following this blog. Until tomorrow, we will be back with three matches.
sc Heerenveen-FC Emmen (6:45 p.m.)
FC Groningen-NEC (8 p.m.)
Vitesse-Excelsior (9 p.m.)
ALM-PEC | Match Report
Draw in Almere is enough: PEC Zwolle returns to premier league after year
PEC Zwolle will return to the premier league next season. The Zwolle players secured the long-awaited promotion with a draw at Almere City. The topper between the frontrunner and the number three of the Keuken Kampioen Divisie ended 1-1.
In recent weeks Zwolle had been close to promotion several times, but could not yet uncork the champagne. Now it finally happened and PEC Zwolle returned to the premier league after one season in the first division.
ALM-PEC | 90+4′ Finished!
It stays 1-1 in Almere which makes PEC Zwolle sure of a spot among the first two in the Keuken Kampioen Division. In the very last seconds goalkeeper Jasper Schendelaar had to dive a ball from the goal line. PEC returns to the premier league after one year.
VOL-CAM | Match report
Two hit headers Mirani bring Volendam win over Cambuur
FC Volendam did excellent business in the fight against relegation with a 2-0 win over SC Cambuur. Damon Mirani scored two goals. The bottom club from Friesland suffered its sixth defeat in a row and can hardly avoid relegation to the first division.
VOl-CAM | Cambuur heading for negative club record
Since its founding in 1964, Cambuur suffered as many league defeats in a season only in 2015/2016 (22 in the premier league) as in 2022/2023 (22).
Leaders Arsenal are behind
Arsenal is behind halfway through the match against Southampton. The leaders are facing a 2-1 deficit.
VOL-CAM | 90+4′ Finished!
End of match in Volendam, where the home team won 2-0. This virtually averted direct relegation, but also in the fight to avoid the nacompetition, these are three welcome points.
It was a bit of a scare for KKD frontrunner PEC Zwolle when Almere City went ahead 1-0, but within minutes PEC recovered. Thomas van den Belt made it 1-1. Zwolle must play at least a draw if it wants to be sure of promotion.
VOL-CAM | 91′ GOAL FC VOLENDAM!
There is the decisive and deserved 2-0 for FC Volendam. Again it is Mirani who scores. From a corner he kicks in.
VOL-CAM | 82′ Again almost 2-0
Antonucci curls the ball to the far corner, but Ruiter taps it just over with his fingertips.
VOL-CAM | Waiting for the 2-0…
SC Cambuur makes an increasingly jaded impression, but Volendam does not yet manage to take advantage. However, there were already good chances for Eiting and Van Mieghem. It looks like we are waiting for the 2-0.
VOL-CAM | 56′ No goal Volendam
Volendam briefly seemed to get to 2-0 just now, but Van Mieghem’s goal did not go through. Mühren was offside moments before.
VOL-CAM | 53′ Mühren immediately dangerous
Former SC Cambuur player Robert Mühren came in for Henk Veerman after halftime and is immediately dangerous. He comes through on the right side and takes Robbin Ruiter’s goal under fire. The goalkeeper makes the angle small enough to stop the ball.
VOL-CAM | 46′ Second half
After a slight delay due to the thunderstorm that had also arrived in Volendam, the ball rolled again at the dike. No more thunderstorms, but quite a bit of rain.
End of the first half. Not much happened in the first 45 minutes, but plenty happened for Volendam. 1-0 for the home team.
VOL-CAM | 39′ GOAL VOLENDAM
There wasn’t anything crazy going on in Volendam yet, but suddenly it’s party time for home team. From a corner the ball goes into the goal via a scramble and Mirani’s shoulder. Volendam leads 1-0.
FC Volendam-SC Cambuur 1-0
Topper suspended due to thunderstorms
The topper in the Keuken Kampioen Divisie is on hold for a while. Referee Jochem Kamphuis brings the teams inside because of thunderstorms in Almere.
VOL-CAM | Another change for Volendam
More injuries for the home team. Brian Plat sprains and goes off for Deron Payne.
Hoesen leaving FC Emmen effective immediately and ends career
Danny Hoesen’s contract with FC Emmen has been terminated by mutual agreement with immediate effect. The club reports that the 32-year-old’s hip injury is such that he has had to end his career.
Hoesen signed a contract in Emmen in February. It was known to the club that the striker was not top fit at the time, a course was started to make him match-fit. Hoesen came to 4 matches for the first team.
Hoesen: “That I now have to stop playing soccer is therefore very hard for me personally. My body says ‘stop’ but my heart wants to keep going. Unfortunately there is no other option than to stop as a footballer. I want to thank FC Emmen for the trust and hope they can stay in the premier league.”
VOL-CAM | 23′ First change at Volendam
End of match for Oristanio. The Italian goes to the side injured and Antonucci, the Belgian with Italian roots, is his replacement. Other than that, little happens in Volendam.
Goes runs from penalty series to penalty series: ‘Quickly ate something on the bus’
Goes had to get from Alkmaar to Geneva within few hours: ‘It was kind of fast, but it worked’
Wouter Goes was on the bench at the Conference League match between AZ and Anderlecht on Thursday night. Fifteen hours later he was on the pitch in Geneva against his Sporting peers to guide AZ Under 19 to the Youth League final.
The 30th playing round of the premier league has begun!
VOL-CAM | Some facts in a row
– This game only took place twice in the premier division: that resulted in 0-0 and in the last edition (1993) a 4-1 win for Volendam. In the first division it was 0-3 two seasons ago.
– In Leeuwarden, Volendam struck 3-0 earlier this season.
– Volendam took 1 point from the last 3 duels. Cambuur lost 5 in a row and can hardly avoid relegation.
– Robert Mühren (Volendam) played at Cambuur. Ruiter and Tol (Cambuur) played for Volendam in the past.
Unwell player FC Twente back on the field
The FC Twente player who became unwell on Sunday in the players’ bus after the match against FC Utrecht has now resumed training. “We are really very happy that he is back,” trainer Ron Jans reported to RTV Oost on Friday.
The footballer was released from the hospital on Monday and was back at the club on Tuesday. “I think there are still some results to come, but at least it has been ruled out that it could be really nasty things. We are very happy with that,” Jans said.
Due to privacy reasons, the player involved will not be disclosed.
FC Twente will play the sub-topper against Sparta at 12:15 p.m. on Sunday.
Aké misses FA Cup semifinal with Manchester City
Nathan Aké will definitely not play with Manchester City in Saturday’s FA Cup semifinal against Sheffield United. The Dutch defender has not recovered in time from a hamstring injury suffered in the Champions League game with Bayern Munich a few days earlier.
“He is not ready yet,” coach Pep Guardiola said. “I don’t yet know exactly how bad the injury is. The examinations are still ongoing and I hope to get more clarity in the near future.”
In addition to the FA Cup, Manchester City is still odds-on in the Premier League and the Champions League. Aké has been a regular in the English champion’s team this season.
PEC on the brink of promotion to premier league
Tonight it can happen. A draw at Almere City FC is all PEC Zwolle needs to return to the premier league after one season in the first division.
Captain Bram van Polen assumes he won’t give this lead away with PEC Zwolle. “If we still give that away, we better hand in our contract,” he said.
Friday night’s program in the first division:
- FC Dordrecht – Jong AZ
- Roda JC – FC Den Bosch
- Willem II – TOP Oss
- FC Eindhoven – NAC Breda
- Helmond Sport – Heracles Almelo
- De Graafschap – ADO Den Haag
- Telstar – VVV-Venlo
- Almere City FC – PEC Zwolle
All duels start at 8 p.m. tonight.
Another cruciate ligament injury in women’s soccer: now England’s Williamson
Soccer star Leah Williamson must pass up next summer’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
The captain of England national team coach Sarina Wiegman has torn the anterior cruciate ligament of her knee and faces a long rehabilitation.
Williamson is next in the long list of players dealing with a cruciate ligament injury. Players such as Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal), Alexei Putellas (FC Barcelona), Beth Mead (Arsenal), Catarina Macario (Olympique Lyonnais) and Marie-Antoinette Katoto (Paris Saint-Germain) all recently fell out with the same injury.
Vitesse must answer to KNVB over role of Abramovich
Vitesse must answer to the KNVB over the role of Roman Abramovich. Late last month, The Guardian reported that the wealthy Russian, who put a lot of money into Chelsea for years, would have secretly financed the Arnhemmers.
Information accessed by The Guardian suggests that oligarch Abramovich reportedly transferred at least 117 million euros to finance Merab Jordania’s takeover of the Arnhem club in 2010.
The new information comes from the “Oligarch files,” leaked data from service provider MeritServus in Cyprus. In addition to The Guardian, the English Bureau of Investigative Journalism also accessed the documents.
Vitesse goes into a little more detail on its website. Indeed, the British newspaper’s revelations are delaying the takeover. “We are in frequent contact with the KNVB about this complex dossier. As is known, we recently submitted the new total package of documents there,” Peter Rovers, the general director ad interim, said about the takeover that is still not finalized.
“Meanwhile, the licensing committee also met, with ‘Vitesse’ as an agenda item. However, before the members will consider the documents provided, we are expected to have to answer a number of questions following the recent publication of The Guardian. We will do that to the best and quickest of our ability. This is expected to delay the review process, but of course it is also in our interest to do so carefully.”
Two weeks ago, Rovers reported that the full package of documents has been submitted to the KNVB licensing affairs office. “The members of the licensing committee will meet in mid-April to consider the submitted documents,” Rovers let it be known then. That will now presumably be later.
It is a turbulent time for Vitesse. The club recently had a conflict over the lease of Gelredome stadium. Moreover, things are not going as hoped from a sporting point of view. Vitesse is number 13 in the premier league.
Heitinga fears headers De Jong and Til
Coach John Heitinga knows that Ajax will have to watch out for PSV’s headiness, especially that of Luuk de Jong and Guus Til, in Sunday’s league topper (kickoff 2:30 p.m.).
“We saw in the match for the Johan Cruijff Schaal where their strength lies,” the former international said at the press conference. “Especially with crosses from the flanks and in standard situations. We have to make sure we keep them out of our sixteen.”
Heitinga acknowledges that Ajax does not have the longest defenders, especially now that Edson Álvarez is absent due to a suspension. “We might be a bit smaller, but we just have to make sure they can’t make those crosses. Or we have to make sure we have an extra man.”
Bassey replaces Álvarez
Heitinga told the press chat that Calvin Bassey will be Álvarez’s replacement at Philips Stadium on Sunday. “You don’t see it, but Calvin is a studious boy. We now give him the confidence that he will help us on Sunday,” the Amsterdammers coach said.
Heitinga expresses confidence in Bassey: ‘Not so complicated for me’
AZ talents also win in Youth League after penalty kicks
AZ has become the first Dutch team to reach the final of the Youth League, an equivalent of the Champions League but for under 19 teams. AZ won in Geneva after penalty kicks from Sporting Portugal. After 90 minutes it was 2-2.
AZ started the second half with a 2-1 lead, but were awarded the 2-2 after only three minutes when Chico Lamba converted a penalty kick. Just before that, Jayden Addai fouled Sporting’s Afonso Moreira in the penalty area.
After that, no more goals were scored. AZ defender Finn Stam received a red card in injury time for an awkward foul on Mateus, who then would have had free passage to the goal.
AZ goalkeeper Owusu-Oduru turned away two penalties in the penalty series, becoming the hero of the AZ talents.
Slot balks at Feyenoord-FC Utrecht starting time
Arne Slot is disappointed that Feyenoord will face FC Utrecht at 16.45 Sunday. The coach of the Rotterdammers would have preferred an 8 p.m. start time.
“We would have loved to play later. We also made that request to the KNVB, but unfortunately that is not possible for safety reasons,” Slot said Thursday night after the game with AS Roma. “So, as so often, it cannot be adjusted.”
Slot: ‘They won 4-1 from us, and that’s clever’
AZ talents ahead in Youth League
AZ talents went to rest with a 2-1 lead in the UEFA Youth League semifinals against Sporting Portugal’s peers.
Diogo Cabral shot the Portuguese into the lead in Geneva after nine minutes with a wonderful peal. Ernest Poku equalized after thirty minutes by working in his sixth goal in the Youth League.
Ro-Zangelo Daal’s 2-1 in the 36th minute was the most beautiful goal before halftime. The AZ striker shot the ball into the goal on the left side of the pitch with a beautiful curve and via the post.
The other Youth League semifinal is between the talents of AC Milan and Hajduk Split.
AZ title could make playoffs European soccer unnecessary
An eventual title for AZ in the Conference League could make European playoffs in the premier league unnecessary.
Should AZ finish in fifth place in the premier league, the playoffs for European soccer will no longer make sense, as AZ already holds the fifth European ticket.
The Alkmaarders will receive a ticket for the group stage of the Europa League if they win the Conference League.
The winner of the playoffs now gains entry to the second preliminary round of the Conference League. So that ticket expires if AZ wins the Conference League and finishes in fifth place.
Incidentally, there is still a long way to go, as AZ is now five points ahead of number five Sparta in the premier league standings.
The KNVB is aware of this scenario, but will only make a decision at a later stage once things become concrete.
Van Nistelrooij: ‘Winning starting point, unless match goes differently’
PSV hopes to create a gap with Ajax on Sunday regarding the battle for second place.
Still, as far as coach Ruud van Nistelrooij is concerned, next Sunday is not necessarily a matter of “having to. “Winning the match is our starting point, but you don’t know how the match will go,” said the coach.
PSV is battling with Ajax for second place. The clubs are equal in points, so a win would help the club from Eindhoven. “But there are still four games to play after that, which are also 12 points,” Van Nistelrooij pointed out.
‘Match in itself’
Van Nistelrooij says he has little to gain from PSV’s previous duels with Ajax. The Eindhoven natives won the last three encounters. “Every match stands on its own,” he believes.
He doesn’t think PSV is in better shape than Ajax at the moment. “No, but I prefer to focus on ourselves. I don’t feel that way about whether we are better or worse. That doesn’t matter to me either.”
Suspended Spurs technical director leaves
Technical director Fabio Paratici is leaving Tottenham Hotspur effective immediately. The former player had already temporarily resigned his position at the English club after he was suspended for involvement in financial misconduct at Juventus.
The suspension has been upheld on appeal. He worked at Juventus between 2010 and 2021 before moving to Tottenham.
Juventus already received a 15-point deduction for financial misconduct. But Italy’s highest sports court suspended this punishment for the time being because the case needs to be reviewed. However, the club has not been acquitted and the directors remain suspended, including Paratici.
Among other things, Juventus is accused of not being honest about transfer values of players in the past. Juventus also allegedly secretly paid out players during the first months of the corona crisis. This while the club reported that all players had surrendered four months of salary.
Cocu back on the bench at Vitesse
Phillip Cocu returns to the Vitesse bench this weekend after a two-week absence. The former international resumed his duties on Thursday. Vitesse plays Saturday at home against Excelsior (9 p.m.).
The 52-year-old Cocu underwent surgery two weeks ago because of acute appendicitis. He was soon allowed home then, but was hospitalized again a day later due to complications. As a result, he also missed last weekend’s Gelderland derby, the match against NEC.
“I hope to be back on the pitch by myself soon, but for now I have to prioritize my health,” Cocu revealed. He was replaced by assistant coach Chris van der Weerden. With Van der Weerden on the bench, Vitesse won twice, from Go Ahead Eagles (2-0) and NEC (1-4).
Vitesse is number 13 in the premier league.
Ryan and Meerdink AZ heroes
AZ won over Anderlecht on Thursday after penalty kicks.
Goalkeeper Mathew Ryan became the hero of the Alkmaarders with two turned penalties, while 19-year-old Mexx Meedrink shot the decisive ball with a fine peal.
“To Mexx’,” thought coach Pascal Jansen. “That’s how he generally takes his penalties. A very steady, clean kick where you really have to be very good at goalkeeping if you want to hit the ball.”
The son of former AZ attacker Martijn Meerdink enjoyed his highlight. “We did it as a team. For me it was a fantastic moment. You dream about that.”
Meerdink on decisive penalty kick AZ: ‘Was completely focused’