RKC wins handsomely over Volendam – Another MVV duel interrupted

RKC wins handsomely over Volendam – Another MVV duel interrupted

Congratulations! RKC can’t get relegated anymore …

For what it’s worth: RKC is officially safe thanks to this win. Mathematically, the Waalwijkers can no longer finish among the bottom three teams in the premier league.

But that, of course, is no longer the issue in Waalwijk. RKC is on 41 points after this victory and with three games to go has thus improved its point total from the previous premiership season (38). And more importantly, the team is in contention for the playoffs for European soccer.

It’s over in Waalwijk. RKC wins 4-1, is the new number eight in the Eredivisie and is in the race for the play-offs for European soccer. Volendam still has a tough job to do to avoid relegation.

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 4-1

The standings in the premier league.

RKC-VOL | 90’+2 What a save by RKC goalkeeper Vaessen

Etienne Vaessen missed RKC’s last game with a knee injury, but tonight he is back. And how. Just before time, he beautifully pulls a shot by Antonucci out from under his crossbar.

RKC had already missed at least three opportunities to extend their lead, but then it finally happened: Julen Lobete, who had just replaced Mats Seuntjens, shot RKC 4-1 against Volendam.

Liberation is a bit of an exaggeration, but party it certainly is in Waalwijk!

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 3-1

RKC-VOL | 81′ ‘MVP’ Kramer asserts himself

Michiel Kramer, RKC’s club leading scorer, has yet to score tonight. Perhaps that plays a role in the riot with Xavier Mbuyamba. There doesn’t seem to be much going on, but Kramer is getting quite upset with the defender and goalkeeper Stankovic, who comes to interfere.

By the way, Kramer did give the assist on Seuntjens’ goal, although he still had to do a few things himself. With 12 goals and 4 assists, Kramer is RKC’s most valuable player in the premier league this season. Kramer is the first player directly involved in 16 goals on behalf of the Waalwijkers in an Eredivisie season since Rick Hoogendorp (20 – 16 goals and 4 assists) and Yuri Cornelisse (16 – 9 goals and 7 assists) in 2002/2003.

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 3-1

Michiel Kramer is upset with Mbuyamba and goalkeeper Stankovic.

FIRST DIVISION | Heracles on their way to leading position?

In Dordrecht, Heracles Almelo now leads 3-1 and that would mean – for a while – the leading position. Indeed, at this score, Heracles and PEC Zwolle have 79 points and the goal difference of the Almeloërs is exactly one goal better than that of the Zwolle players.

After Jari Schuurman (Dordrecht) was sent off the field with his second yellow card, 20-year-old Sem Scheperman made his first appearance in professional soccer. And then Lasse Wehmeyer also made it 3-1.

RKC-VOL | 70′ Volendam increases the pressure.

FC Volendam did step up the pressure in the second half and it did produce chances. For example, that of Murkin, who did not come out well with his passes and worked the ball just wide of the goal.

At RKC we now see that time is stretched wherever possible. And that says – with a 3-1 lead – quite a lot. It is not yet played in Waalwijk.

RKC-VOL | 65′ Can Henk Veerman turn the tide?

With a quarter of a game to go, Henk Veerman makes his appearance at Volendam. The tall striker replaces Robert Mühren. Florent Sanchez also comes into the team for Calvin Twigt.

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 3-1

RKC-VOL | 59′ Jozefzoon off, Bakkali his replacement

For Florian Jozefzoon, the match is over after a hard but regulation slide by Benamar. He limps off the pitch and is replaced by Zakaria Bakkali.

Bakkali was disciplined just a few weeks ago. While the former PSV player has been back in the squad for a while now and will get his chance, the same cannot be said for former AZ player Bel Hassani. Coach Joseph Oosting did not want to waste any words on that.

Bel Hassani is present in Waalwijk, by the way, in the stands.

Illiass Bel Hassani in the stands in Waalwijk.


Just when you think Volendam has been floored, it does something back. Substitute Antonucci curls the ball beautifully into the far corner for the 3-1. Will it be exciting after all?

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 3-1

Oukili scored within three minutes in the first half, Seuntjens does it within four minutes in the second half. The striker spins opponent Murkin around and slides the ball simply into the corner. RKC is up 3-0 against Volendam!

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 3-0

Mats Seuntjens celebrates RKC’s 3-0 with a hand kiss.

Volendam coach Wim Jonk kept base debutant Deron Payne in the locker room and replaced him with an extra striker: Francesco Antonucci. All or nothing, then, in Waalwijk. And that makes sense with a 2-0 deficit.

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 2-0

Florian Jozefzoon just got two chances and on the third one he hits the mark. He comes in with a clever run, gets the ball after a fine pass from Pelle Clement and gloriously sticks the ball into the goal for RKC’s 2-0 against Volendam.

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 2-0

  • Pro Shots

    Florian Jozefzoon slides the ball over Volendam goalkeeper Stankovic.
  • ANP

    Florian Jozefzoon celebrates his goal with Mats Seuntjens.

FIRST DIVISION | Heracles at 1-1 against Dordrecht

Football is also being played in the first division tonight. Of the five matches, Heracles Almelo’s match at FC Dordrecht is the eye-catcher. After last week’s promotion, the Almeloans would like to end the season with the title. But John Lammers’ team still needs to make up three points on PEC Zwolle.

PEC Zwolle won’t visit Jong PSV until Monday, Heracles traveled to Dordrecht tonight. And there the score was 1-1 after 40 minutes. Samuel Armenteros brought Heracles to 1-0, but Samuele Longo equalized within half an hour.

Samuel Armenteros is the celebrated man at Heracles against FC Dordrecht.

RKC-VOL | 28′ Two chances for Jozefzoon

It feels a bit like a summer evening game in Waalwijk’s slowly setting sun. But it’s actually a hearty game so far. For example, we just saw a sort of shooting gallery in front of the RKC goal, but the ball just wouldn’t go in for the Volendammers.

Then on the other side we saw two good actions by Florian Jozefzoon. First the veteran shot from distance just over the cross and then he slid the ball in a promising position in front of the goal.

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 1-0

RKC-VOL | Look who we have there….

Spotted in the stands in Waalwijk tonight: PSV’er Joey Veerman. Not surprising when you consider that Veerman is a Volendammer in heart and soul and also that he might see his great friend Henk Veerman in action tonight.

Veerman won the cup final with PSV last Sunday. Tomorrow at 6:45 p.m. the crucial away game with Sparta is on the program for him.

Joey Veerman in the stands in Waalwijk at RKC-Volendam.

RKC -VOL | 12′ Mühren sticks the ball on the crossbar

What a wonderful pass again from Carel Eiting, with 9 assists anyway the declarer of FC Volendam. Now he subtly taps the ball into the path of Robert Mühren, who also has something beautiful in mind. Only his slide beyond the reach of goalkeeper Vaessen hit the bar.

It’s a fair warning, because since Oukili’s goal we’ve seen Volendam in particular on the attack. RKC is also generous with corners and that is not smart against Volendam: few clubs this season are as effective with standard situations as Volendam. Thanks to declarer Eiting.

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 1-0

Yassin Oukili gets free rein in midfield and Volendam regrets it, as the RKC player slides the ball unerringly past goalkeeper Filip Stankovic into the far corner. RKC leads 1-0 early on!

RKC Waalwijk – FC Volendam 1-0

Yassin Oukili is congratulated by Mats Seuntjens and Michiel Kramer.

The ball is rolling in Waalwijk. RKC builds up, but when the ball is lost around the center line, Volendam captain Carel Eiting immediately puts Gaetano Oristanio alone in front of RKC goalkeeper Etienne Vaessen. The goalkeeper is first to the ball and provides relief.

Good news for NEC: Tannane back for fight for European soccer

Oussama Tannane disagrees with referee Edwin van de Graaf in the duel with PSV.

Oussama Tannane returns to the NEC squad after a month’s absence. The Moroccan playmaker can rejoin coach Rogier Meijer’s team on Saturday against sc Heerenveen. Tannane suffered a hamstring injury on April 1 in the 4-2 lost home game against PSV.

It happened when he scored from a free kick in the closing stages. Tannane shot so hard that he was injured. Without the creative midfielder, who has scored six goals and provided nine assists this season, NEC lost the Gelderland derby against Vitesse (1-4). NEC did win 1-0 at FC Groningen two weeks ago, in a game that was halted after a cup of liquor was thrown from the crowd against the linesman and played out a few days later.

NEC is in eighth place in the Eredivisie with 38 points, the same as RKC Waalwijk and Heerenveen. Basically, the numbers 5 through 8 in the final standings will compete for European soccer in the playoffs.

Watch the summary of NEC – PSV

Van den Berg stops playing soccer

Mandy van den Berg is quitting soccer after this season. The 32-year-old PSV player announced this in a video on Instagram. Van den Berg played ninety international matches and was captain of the Dutch team that won the 2017 European Championship at home.

The defender lost her starting spot during that tournament. Van den Berg did get to fill in briefly in the final against Denmark that was won and took the European Cup together with Sherida Spitse. Shortly after the tournament, she decided not to be available for the national team anymore. Van den Berg later reconsidered, but she was no longer called up for the national team.

“It’s been nice and enough,” Van den Berg says in the video announcing her farewell. “It’s time for a new phase. Not the awards I won made my career, but all the people I met, the lessons I learned and all the other valuable moments that came with it.”

Van den Berg played for the likes of ADO Den Haag, Liverpool, Reading, Valencia and clubs in Sweden and Norway. With PSV, she won the KNVB Cup in 2021. The Westland native, who married a Spanish former soccer star earlier this year, works as a TV analyst and is working on a trainer’s course.

Mandy van den Berg

PSG in talks with Messi after suspension period

Paris Saint-Germain will enter talks with Lionel Messi once the Argentine footballer’s suspension is over.

The club reportedly suspended striker for two weeks after he traveled to Saudi Arabia without permission. “We will see what happens once Leo is back,” PSG coach Christophe Galtier told a press conference.

Galtier did say he distanced himself from supporters demanding the departure of Messi and Neymar. PSG decided to provide extra security for the two attackers following demonstrations by the Paris club’s hardcore supporter core. “Our society seems to be running wild,” said the coach of the French league leader.

Leaders PSG have a five-point lead over Olympique Marseille, the current No. 2 in the French Ligue 1.

AZ promotes coach Sierksma to Jong AZ after Youth League success

More news from Alkmaar.

Coach Jan Sierksma will be promoted at the club after his success with the AZ youth in the UEFA Youth League. The 38-year-old Fries succeeds Maarten Martens as coach of Jong AZ, which plays in the first division, after this season.

“After three years of coaching in the upper echelons of the AZ youth academy, this is an ideal next step,” said Sierksma, who will soon complete the highest trainer course (UEFA Pro). Once he has his papers, he will be allowed to work independently as a head coach in professional soccer.

“In 2020, during the talks about my first contract, a plan was already set up for the steps I can make within AZ. Because I will now start working with Jong AZ in professional soccer, that comes out exactly as was discussed.”

With Belgian former player Martens (38), the club management is holding talks about another position within AZ.

Jansen looks with ‘due pride’ at achievements former colleague Slot

AZ is on a rock-solid season. Pascal Jansen’s team will play Ajax on Saturday night in a direct duel for third place in the premier league and will play West Ham United in the Conference League semifinals next week.

“These are great times for the club, but on the other hand it is important to keep the focus and focus on the things that are on the program,” Jansen said Friday at the press conference. “It is nice that we are in the semifinals of the Conference League, but that is not on the agenda right now. Ajax first.”

Karlsson not yet fit

In the match against Ajax, Jansen cannot yet call upon Jesper Karlsson. The Swede has not yet recovered sufficiently from an upper leg injury. Vangelis Pavlidis and Jens Odgaard have recovered sufficiently to make their appearances on Saturday.

Jansen looks with ‘due pride’ at performance of former colleague Slot

Slot remains silent about possible talks with Tottenham Hotspur

Arne Slot does not want to comment on media reports that he has been invited to a meeting with Tottenham Hotspur management. “I only want it to be about our game on Sunday against Excelsior now,” he said at the press conference. “I don’t want anything else to make the headlines. It shouldn’t be about other things.”

Slot is said to be in the picture for the Spurs head coach position. Xabi Alonso, Mauricio Pochettino and Julian Nagelsmann have also been linked with it. English clubs often invite several trainers for an interview before making a decision.

Hofpleinfontein ready for possible Feyenoord championship celebration

Protective measures for Rotterdam’s Hofpleinfontein have been completed, a spokesman for the municipality of Rotterdam announced. In preparation for celebrating Feyenoord supporters, the pond has been cleaned and the ornaments removed.

The club can become champions this weekend. PSV must then lose points at Sparta on Saturday and Feyenoord must beat Excelsior on Sunday.

Also, the “Hofplein regulation” will come into effect in case of a possible championship. This involves closing the area around Hofplein to traffic from fifteen minutes before the end of the match.

Traditionally, the Hofplein area is crowded when Feyenoord wins the national title. At the last championship in 2017, hundreds of people took a dip in the fountain.

No traffic measures will be taken around Stadhuisplein, reports the municipality. Crowds are expected there Sunday because of a “Feyenoord festival,” organized by catering establishments on the square. The match, which starts at 2:30 p.m., will be broadcast on the Stadhuisplein on a large screen.

Feyenoord fans take possession of the Hofpleinfontein after their club wins the KNVB Cup

Slot invited Kuijt: ‘Expect Dirk to get trainer success’

Dirk Kuijt recently joined Feyenoord for two days of training with Arne Slot. According to the trainer, it was an appointment that had been fixed for some time.

“Dirk was annoyingly dismissed. I asked him afterwards if he would like to join us for a few days, because I think Dirk has meant an awful lot to Feyenoord,” Slot said.

“I have noticed that Dirk is a very inspired trainer,” Slot said. “I hope and expect him to show this somewhere in the coming years, that he can achieve the same success as players as a trainer.”

In March, Slot also gave former player Danny Buijs the opportunity to walk with him for a few days.

‘Zerrouki real winner with good personality’

Arne Slot is delighted that Feyenoord managed to capture Ramiz Zerrouki at the fourth attempt.

“We have been able to see in recent years at FC Twente how important Zerrouki is,” Slot said at the press conference. “He wins a lot of duels and gives a lot of shape to the first build-up, a real winner with a good personality. It also says enough that several clubs were after him.”

Slot is reportedly referring to Ajax and PSV, the two clubs that were also linked with the Algerian international.

Slot happy with arrival Zerrouki: ‘Player with a lot of personality’

Van Bronckhorst reminisces about 2017

Championship stress. Does that exist? Yes it does. Former Feyenoord coach Giovanni van Bronckhorst recounts his experiences of how his team lost 3-0 at Excelsior in the championship match in the 2016/2017 season, but later still won the title with Feyenoord.

Salient detail: there is a possible scenario this weekend that Feyenoord could again play the championship match at Woudestein. For that, PSV must lose points at Sparta the day before.

An extensive article with Van Bronckhorst on Feyenoord’s upcoming championship and his take on trainer Arne Slot will follow on Sunday on NOS.nl and in the NOS app.

Van Bronckhorst on championship stress in 2017: ‘Yes, that did something to players’

Starting place Gravenberch at Bayern

Ryan Gravenberch will start Saturday’s Bundesliga away game with Bayern Munich against Werder Bremen. Coach Thomas Tuchel has named the midfielder as a replacement for the suspended Leon Goretzka. The coach told that at a press conference on Friday.

Bayern Munich acquired Gravenberch from Ajax for 18.5 million euros last summer. The 20-year-old midfielder received very little playing time with the reigning champion of Germany this season.

The club does not only miss Goretzka in Bremen. Josip Stanisic, Dayot Upamecano, Manuel Neuer, Lucas Hernández, Alphonso Davies and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting will also have to watch.

Bayern leads the Bundesliga with a one-point lead over Borussia Dortmund, which has a home game with VfL Wolfsburg scheduled for Sunday.

Ryan Gravenberch

Footballer Mattiello leaves Go Ahead Eagles effective immediately

Go Ahead Eagles can no longer call on Federico Mattiello during the final matches of the season. The Italian midfielder’s expiring contract was terminated immediately at his own request “due to personal circumstances.”

The 27-year-old Mattiello came to Go Ahead Eagles last September free of charge. The former player of Juventus, Bologna and SPAL, among others, made six appearances in the premier league.

Go Ahead Eagles is in eleventh place with four matches to go. The team from Deventer concludes the league with matches against FC Groningen, Feyenoord, FC Volendam and sc Heerenveen.

Federico Mattiello

‘United let Weghorst return to Burnley’

It looks like Wout Weghorst will not be offered a long-term contract at Manchester Uinited, the Manchester Evenings News writes.

The Burnley striker has been playing for United on a rental basis since January and scored twice in 26 games. Weghorst is still under contract with Burnley until 2025, which has already secured promotion to the Premier League.

The 30-year-old Weghorst had a spectacular start at United, including a goal in the Carabao Cup semifinal (the tournament he would later also win with the club) in the away game against Nottingham Forrest.

Weghorst has had to settle for short substitutions more and more often lately, partly due to the return of the once again fiit Anthoy Martial.

Wout Weghorst

Van Nistelrooij confirms: ‘Sambo returns from Sparta’

Coach Ruud van Nistelrooij also tells the press conference that Shurandy Sambo will return to PSV after this season. The 21-year-old right winger is currently rented out to Sparta and is making a good impression in Rotterdam.

Sambo participated in 27 of the 30 league rounds and was a two-time goal scorer. Those two goals came in Sparta’s last two premier league matches, against FC Twente and sc Heerenveen.

Based on his performance, the soccer player made his debut in the Dutch Junior Team at the end of March.


By the way, Van Nistelrooij will have to be patient before seeing Sambo back at work with his own eyes: the player is serving a suspension on Saturday night. The same goes for Ibrahim Sangaré at PSV.

Shurandy Sambo

PSV misses Hazard against Sparta

PSV will have to do without striker Thorgan Hazard against Sparta on Saturday night. The Belgian sustained an ankle injury from last Sunday’s cup final win against Ajax, coach Ruud van Nistelrooij reported at the press conference.

Hazard was still responsible for PSV’s 1-1 draw in the cup final and took the first penalty in the penalty kick series.

Apart from Hazard and the long-term injured Armando Obsipo and Mauro Junior, everyone is fit at PSV.

Thorgan Hazard

Berghuis doubtful at Ajax for fraught duel with AZ

It is still unclear whether Ajax coach John Heitinga can have Steven Berghuis at his disposal Saturday night. The attacking midfielder is struggling with an injury.

“Berghuis has not trained this week and has completed his own program, he had to be sidelined during the cup final (last Sunday, ed.) with complaints and is a doubt for Saturday night,” Heitinga announced on the Ajax website.

Kudus fit again

Heitinga did come with positive news about Mohammed Kudus. “For Kudus, the final came too soon but he did participate in all training sessions with the group afterwards and is available again,” the coach said.

“Devyne Rensch filled in at De Kuip on Sunday and came out well, he had no reaction on Monday. So he also just trained fully with the group this week.”

The match between Ajax and AZ starts at 9 p.m. on Saturday.

Steven Berghuis (right) in duel with Joey Veerman during the cup final between PSV and Ajax

‘PSV and Ajax want Spierings from Toulouse’

Stijn Spierings’ performances at French side Toulouse have not gone unnoticed. According to Voetbal International and De Telegraaf, PSV and Ajax later have their eye on the 27-year-old midfielder.

Spierings has an expiring contract at the French club, making him of extra interest to clubs.

Upcoming transfers

The defensive midfielder is seen by PSV as a replacement for Ibrahim Sangaré and Érick Gutiérrez. The duo are expected to leave Eindhoven in the summer.

At Ajax, Spierings could make up for the departure of Edson Álvarez. The Mexican is aiming to leave the club from Amsterdam after this season.

Spierings played almost all the games this season for Toulouse, where he has been active since October 2020. With the club he won the Coupe de France last Saturday. Spierings was also active with AZ, Sparta, RKC Waalwijk and Bulgarian Levski Sofia.

Stijn Spierings (center) celebrates his goal during the league match against Montpellier in October 2022

PEC with veteran Van Hintum to premier league

Bart van Hintum will enter the premier league next season with PEC Zwolle. The 36-year-old defender has extended his expiring contract in Zwolle for another year.

Van Hintum returned to the club from Overijssel last summer after spending three years for FC Groningen.

“When I signed with PEC Zwolle last season on April 5, the club was in a spirited relegation battle,” Van Hintum remembers. “So how nice is it that thirteen months later I can say that after that painful relegation we are back in the premier league?”

Van Hintum promoted to the premier league with PEC Zwolle in 2012. He won the KNVB Cup and Johan Cruijff Schaal two years later with the current first division frontrunner.

Bart van Hintum

Spalletti dedicates title to Napoli fans and late brother

In Italy, most of the talk is about Napoli’s first national title since 1990.

Trainer Luciano Spalletti of the club from Naples dedicated the third title in club history to all the players and supporters. He did not forget his family either. “I dedicate it also to my daughter Matilde and the rest of my family who always support and push me. And of course to my late brother Marcello,” Spalletti said.

Spalletti became visibly emotional when he mentioned his brother’s name. “But to see all the fans of Napoli so happy, that is the most beautiful emotion for me,” he said Thursday after the draw against Udinese (1-1) that sufficed for the title.

“I found it quite tough the last few weeks. I felt the desire of the whole city of Naples. That does give pressure. Not all people have it easy in Naples. Precisely those people deserve this success.”

“Our older supporters still saw Diego Maradona play soccer,” Spalletti said of the Argentine who led Napoli to their first and second national titles in 1987 and 1990. “But after that they had to wait 33 years. I always promised them to get the most out of this selection. Fortunately that has worked out quite well.”

‘Twente will receive around 8 million for Zerrouki’

FC Twente will retain a sum of about 8 million euros from the transfer of Ramiz Zerrouki, according to Tubantia. The regional newspaper writes that Feyenoord had applied to Twente for Zerrouki for the fourth time.

The Tukkers rejected an initial offer of 4.5 million last summer, after which Feyenoord also made two unsuccessful bids for the Algerian international in the winter break. “

“A few weeks ago Feyenoord reported for Zerrouki again and this time the talks did proceed in good harmony,” Tubantia writes.

Zerrouki is considered a protégé of Feyenoord coach Arne Slot. In January, he was still talking about Zerrouki’s transfer failure.

Slot on Zerrouki transfer failure: ‘Pity, but am not disappointed’

Feyenoord and Twente agree on Zerrouki

There is immediate big news on this Friday morning! FC Twente and Feyenoord have reached an agreement on the transfer of Ramiz Zerrouki.

The 24-year-old midfielder from the Enschede club will sign a multi-year contract with the premier league leaders. Zerrouki still had a contract with Twente until mid-2024.

“After FC Twente and Feyenoord failed to reach an agreement last summer and during the winter break, both clubs have now reached an agreement,” Twente reported on its website.

Second purchase

The transfer of the 17-time Algeria international to Feyenoord will be finalized in the coming days. He is the second purchase for Feyenoord after Thomas van de Belt from PEC Zwolle for next season.

Zerrouki comes from Ajax youth and continued his education at FC Twente in 2016.

Ramiz Zerrouki

Program and standings premier league

Will this be the weekend that decides the battle for the national title in the Netherlands?

Leaders Feyenoord can become champions for the 16th time Sunday if they win the away game against low-flyer Excelsior and PSV lose points at number five Sparta on Saturday.

In Amsterdam, Ajax and AZ battle for third place on Saturday.

The fate of SC Cambuur and FC Groningen could be sealed this weekend with direct relegation to the first division.

It promises to be another day full of soccer news.

We look ahead, as usual on Friday, to the premier league playoffs. Feyenoord can celebrate the national title this weekend if they win against Excelsior themselves and PSV lose points at Sparta.

And how are things going at Ajax and AZ? The two meet Saturday night in Amsterdam in a direct battle for third place.

We also reflect extensively on Napoli’s first national title since 1990. The selection returns to Naples today, where it will no doubt be met by a huge crowd.

Kayleigh Williams