Preview Feyenoord - NAC Breda

Ronald Koeman watched the Dutch cup final with great interest on Thursday evening. A win for PSV would have handed Feyenoord a place in the Europa League playoff round regardless of results in the last two Eredivisie games. However, with victory going to AZ Feyenoord must now ensure that they finish in the top three to secure that outcome. The first step in achieving that would be a win in the final home game of the season against NAC Breda. 'We have to finish third now to play one less round in Europe,' said the coach on Friday morning at De Kuip.

When Feyenoord begin their Europa League adventure has a big impact on the preparations for next season. 'If we play one round before the group stage, our preseason is six weeks,' explained Koeman. 'If we have to play an additional qualifying round, our first game will be before the start of the season. That’s not ideal, because in the last week you want to focus on the league and a European game does not really fit in with that.'
As well as helping determine when Feyenoord will start their European campaign next season, Sunday’s game against NAC is important in other ways too. The Rotterdammers want to wrap up 2012-2013 on a high of course, but it’s also worth noting that a win or a draw would mean Feyenoord have gone through the whole season without a home defeat. Koeman: 'So it’s an important finale for us.'
Despite last week’s 2-0 defeat in The Hague, Koeman is confident going into the weekend game. His team looked very tired against ADO Den Haag, but Koeman does not feel his players are desperate for the season to end. 'It’s not my impression that we’re running on empty,' he said. 'In that regard our schedule has gone well this year. We have had minimal injuries.'
Speaking of injuries, Koeman will be able to call upon Stefan de Vrij on Sunday. The defender was substituted with a head wound last Sunday at ADO Den Haag, but has made a good recovery. The player returned to training on Friday. 'Stefan is doing well,' clarified Koeman. 'He could play on Sunday.'
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