Ajax go top of Eredivisie after 7-1 win as AZ suffer first defeat

Dusan Tadic and Brian Brobbey celebrate after Brobbey puts Ajax 3-0 up against Excelsior. Photo: ANP/Maurice van Steen
Dusan Tadic and Brian Brobbey celebrate after Brobbey puts Ajax 3-0 up against Excelsior. Photo: ANP/Maurice van Steen

Ajax shook off their Champions League hangover to storm back to the top of the Eredivisie with a 7-1 drubbing of Excelsior.

Brian Brobbey scored twice and Dusan Tadic, Steven Bergwijn and Steven Berghuis also chipped in, while only some fine saves by Stijn van Gassel kept the score in single figures. Nikolas Agrafiotis managed a late consolation for the visitors.

Earlier, AZ suffered their first defeat of the season as Feyenoord came back to win 3-1 in Alkmaar. Jens Odgaard put the home side in front on 25 minutes as goalkeeper Justin Bijlow fatally hesitated, but Orkun Kökcü levelled the scores from the penalty spot within four minutes.

Ten minutes after half-time Sebastian Szymanski was allowed to waltz through AZ’s defence and unleash a swerving shot that Hobie Verhulst could only flap at on its way in, before Danilo rounded off a neat passing move with a thunderbolt from 25 metres.

PSV Eindhoven racked up a 6-1 win at home to Utrecht, with Guus Til and Anwar El Ghazi both scoring twice, to leave the top four teams separated by just two points.

Cocu off the mark

At the bottom of the table, Vitesse Arnhem recorded their first win under new coach Philip Cocu at the expense of Cambuur Leeuwarden.

Ryan Flamingo steered in a free-kick by Maximilian Wittek for the opener after 19 minutes before Kacper Kozlowski, running unchallenged from his own half, and Sondre Tronstad, bundling in a loose ball from a corner, sealed the points in the second half.

Twente continued their strong start to the season with a 3-0 win over Groningen, with all the goals coming in the second half. For the visitors, a fourth successive defeat dragged them down to within two points of the bottom, level with Vitesse and Cambuur.

NEC’s run of seven straight draws came to an end with a 2-0 defeat by Sparta that keeps the Rotterdam club in sixth place, while just below them RKC Waalwijk had to settle for a point in a goalless draw in Sittard.

Eagles pounce

Go Ahead Eagles snatched a point at home to Heerenveen when Finn Stokkers prodded the ball home during a goalmouth scramble in the 92nd minute, after Thom Haye’s daisycutter had given the visitors the lead early in the second half.

Two of last season’s promoted clubs, Emmen and Voldendam, remain in the bottom places after drawing 1-1 in Drenthe. Walid Ould-Chikh’s opener for Volendam after 64 minutes was almost immediately cancelled out by a low shot from Ahmed El Messaoudi that deceived goalkeeper Filip Stankovic and crept into the net.



Emmen 1-1 Volendam


Cambuur Leeuwarden 0-3 Vitesse Arnhem

Fortuna Sittard 0-0 RKC Waalwijk

Go Ahead Eagles 1-1 Heerenveen

PSV Eindhoven 6-1 Utrecht


Ajax 7-1 Excelsior

AZ Alkmaar 1-3 Feyenoord

Sparta Rotterdam 2-0 NEC Nijmegen

Twente Enschede 3-0 Groningen

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