Rutten bullish: ‘No one is unbeatable’
Feyenoord can pull themselves back into the middle of the title race on Wednesday night by claiming three points at current league leaders PSV. As things stand, the sides are nine points apart but an assured Fred Rutten feels Feyenoord can bridge the gap. The message was clear from the coach at the press conference the day before the match: ‘We are going to Eindhoven to beat PSV.’
‘On the other hand, it’s clear that we cannot win the season there,’ continued Rutten. ‘Clearly it’s a big gap if we don’t win there, but there will still be eighteen matches to play. If we continue to make progress you never know which way this season could go.’
Rutten is well aware of PSV’s strengths, not least because the club’s current head coach Phillip Cocu was his assistant when he was in charge in Eindhoven. ‘But that makes no difference at all for me. This is a match like any other,’ said Rutten.
The Feyenoord coach certainly feels PSV are stronger than they have been in recent years. ‘PSV have definitely advanced. They can quickly switch when they win or lose the ball. On paper PSV has the best squad in the Netherlands, but even they have dropped points this season. No one is unbeatable.’
Rutten was unwilling to say too much about his battle plans the day before the match. What is clear is that the coach cannot call on Jens Toornstra, who retired injured during Sunday’s 2-2 draw at home to AZ. Again, Rutten preferred to remain positive: ‘I focus most of my attention on the players who are available. I can make various decisions to cover his position.’
Rutten also said that Khalid Boulahrouz would return to the match-day squad on Wednesday, after having to sit out the second half of the Standard Liege win due to injury.