Koeman to change starting line-up for cup

Without going into detail, Ronald Koeman has revealed he will be changing his first eleven for Wednesday’s cup tie in Nijmegen after Sunday’s Eredivisie defeat at PSV. The Feyenoord coach would not be drawn on the specifics, but did say that it was time to switch things up a little.

The heavy loss in Eindhoven will have been one of the main reasons for Koeman’s decision. The coach admitted that he has discussed that performance in detail with the players. For Koeman, the defeat was mostly down to a lack of aggression. ‘PSV were playing with a knife to their throats a lot more than we were. That was shown most clearly by the fouls committed by Ola Toivonen. He set down a marker, but we failed to respond well enough. That is partly because of the type of players we have in the team.’
Koeman was less concerned about the criticism that rained down on his team after the performance in Eindhoven. ‘It shows that the club is in a completely different place to where we were last year. It’s just that at this moment in time it’s unrealistic to expect the same from the team. Because of the large number of new players and the lads that have left, to a large extent we have had to start over and that takes time. That’s does not mean we are looking for excuses, though. Standards are still high at De Kuip.’
Koeman was also keen to stress the significance of the game against N.E.C. in Nijmegen on Wednesday. ‘This is a very important game for us. The cup is still the quickest route into European football.’
Joris Mathijsen, who was forced off in Eindhoven with a hamstring injury, is certain to miss the game. ‘But his injury seems not to be as bad as first feared,’ said Koeman, who also reported that Stefan de Vrij is making good progress in his own recovery from injury. ‘But I don’t expect to see either player return before the international weekend in mid October.’
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