Koeman: ‘We have to concentrate on ourselves’

Sunday’s game between RKC Waalwijk and Feyenoord will be the fifth time the Koeman brothers Erwin and Ronald Koeman pit their wits against each other as coaches. Ronald still feels it’s something special, although he has come out on top on the last four occasions. ‘But that can also mean that the time when that run is brought to an end is getting nearer,’ suggested Feyenoord’s head coach at De Kuip on Friday. We both really need the points, so there won’t be any freebies.’

The younger brother spoke those words with the Eredivisie table in mind. With five games left everything is still very much up for grabs. This weekend, a lot of eyes will be focused on Sunday’s big one between PSV and Ajax, currently first and second. ‘It’s only logical that match is getting a lot of attention, but we have to concentrate on ourselves. For us that match is only interesting if we win. If we do, basically every possible result in Eindhoven could be in our favour.’

Koeman feels that coming away from Waalwijk with three points in the bag will be tough enough. Not simply because of RKC, who he feels are tough opponents, but also because of the fact that half of Feyenoord’s wins this season have been by a single goal. ‘That shows that we can have problems with all opponents. And at this stage of the season dropping points has bigger and bigger consequences.’

With that in mind, Koeman is hopeful he’ll be able to call upon Lex Immers, who is making a quick recovery from an ankle injury and may be fit for Sunday’s game. The midfielder has racked up ten goals in the league this season, so Koeman is keen to get him back as soon as possible. The coach will decide whether or not to give him a place in the squad after training on Saturday. ‘Lex does a lot of work for the team. That was certainly made clear in the past few games when he wasn’t playing, without wishing to criticise the others. For us, it’s very important that Immers is fit on Sunday.’
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