Monday 06 July 2020

AZ, Ajax and Feyenoord all win to keep title race bubbling

Eredivisie logo

Logo: Eredivisie

AZ Alkmaar outclassed ADO Den Haag with a four-goal display to keep pace with Ajax at the top of the Eredivisie.

Captain Teun Koopmeiners scored a penalty and free-kick to bring his total for the season to 11. Owen Wijndal scored his first goal for the Alkmaarders, while a late strike by substitute Ferdy Druijf completed a scoreline that reflected AZ’s dominance.

Ajax got back to winning ways after three straight defeats in the league and cup, but it took nearly an hour for Dusan Tadic to put the champions ahead in Heerenveen. Further strikes by Tadic and Quinsy Promes within six minutes banished Ajax’s jitters, while the Frisians’ only reward for their efforts was a well-taken goal by Mitchell van Bergen.

Feyenoord stayed in touch with the leaders by beating Willem II 2-0 in De Kuip. The match was decided in the first half by a neat finish from Jens Toornstra and a Steven Berghuis penalty.

Only Berghuis and coach Dick Advocaat were available for interview after the match because of coronavirus precautions. ‘The first half was excellent against a team that was only three points behind us before the game,’ said Advocaat. ‘The second half was less good but we didn’t give away many chances.’

PSV Eindhoven strengthened their hold on fourth place with a 1-0 win in Groningen. Denzel Dumfries put the visitors ahead early on with his seventh goal of the season, but PSV owed their win to a string of outstanding saves in the second half by Lars Unnerstall.

Fortuna save point

A relegation six-pointer between Fortuna Sittard and PEC Zwolle ended all square after Lennart Thy scored a last-minute penalty for the visitors. George Cox had put Fortuna ahead in the 71st minute when he was first to react after PEC goalkeeper Michael Zetterer spilled a shot from Mark Diemers.

Both clubs moved within a point of FC Twente, who suffered their third defeat in a row as a solo effort by Jay-Roy Grot clinched all three points for Vitesse. Grot injured himself in the process of scoring and had to be substituted immediately afterwards.

Emmen moved closer to securing a third season in the Eredivisie by inflicting VVV’s first defeat of 2020. Two goals by Nikolai Laursen and one from Marko Kolar, all in the second half, earned Dick Lukkien’s side their ninth home win of the campaign.

Cup finalists Utrecht kept up their good form with a 5-1 demolition of Sparta. Sean Klaiber, who will miss the final after picking up a yellow card against Ajax, had a hand in three of the goals before rounding off the scoring with a screamer from 30 metres.

Bottom club RKC Waalwijk took a 2-0 lead in Almelo, but despite missing a string of chances Heracles were ultimately too strong, with Mauro Junior laying on three of their four goals.

Results

Friday

Fortuna Sittard 1-1 PEC Zwolle

Saturday

AZ Alkmaar 4-0 ADO Den Haag

Emmen 3-0 VVV Venlo

Heerenveen 1-3 Ajax

Vitesse Arnhem 1-0 Twente Enschede

Sunday

Feyenoord 2-0 Willem II Tilburg

Groningen 0-1 PSV Eindhoven

Heracles 4-2 RKC Waalwijk

Utrecht 5-1 Sparta

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