Van Bronckhorst points up the importance of a positive crowd
After three away matches on the bounce, Feyenoord return to De Kuip again on Sunday for a late afternoon start against Roda JC Kerkrade. Giovanni van Bronckhorst knows how vital it is for the fans to get behind his team as they endeavour to end a dismal run of defeats.‘It’s important for us to start well and show from the off that we’re totally up for it,’ said the head coach at his weekly press conference on Friday afternoon. ‘That will get the crowd behind us. We could do with that as we search for a victory.’
Dick Advocaat was brought in as an advisor earlier this week. The 68-year-old, most recently head coach at Sunderland, has watched the players train over the past three days and has already injected some ‘new energy’ into the group, says Van Bronckhorst. ‘Dick is one of the top coaches we have in the Netherlands. So I’m delighted to have him and I am grateful to him for offering his experience and help. It’s admirable how much he still loves the game. As a coach learning the ropes I would be mad not to take advantage of that.’
Van Bronckhorst says in recent days he has seen ‘a group that it very passionate and full of energy’ in training. ‘We have to transfer that energy to matches, but in recent weeks we have found that hard. Things have to be different on Sunday. Plus it’s important that everyone does his job. In the first few weeks after the winter break the players often allowed their hearts to rule their heads, they wanted to help each other and as a result they ended up out of position. In the cup tie against Roda JC and the match against Ajax they did better, but against Zwolle it was less good again.’
The squad trained behind closed doors on Thursday and Friday, and the same is planned for Saturday. ‘We’re doing that to calm things down around the team,’ explained Van Bronckhorst. In the last two sessions the coach was able to run the rule over Rick Karsdorp, who missed the match at Zwolle with a groin strain. Otherwise the coach has a full squad to choose from against Roda JC.