Asked whether he could be congratulated after Saturday’s 2-1 win against AZ, Giovanni van Bronckhorst said that he would ...
Feyenoord and Ajax played out a thrilling 2-2 Eredivisie draw at De Kuip Sunday. The sides were well matched, but Bert van Marwijk saw his side take a first half lead through Giovanni van Bronckhorst. Dennis Rommedahl and Siem de Jong gave the visitors the lead midway through the second half, but Jonathan de Guzman tied things up again. Andwélé Slory had two big opportunities to secure all the points in the final minutes, but he spurned both, denying Chun-Soo Lee victory in his first start for the club.
The first half was certainly worth the entrance fee and the crow responded by creating an atmosphere befitting such a prestigious game. The home side had the upper hand, creating chances and edging ahead before the half hour. With memories of recent reverses against their archrivals in their minds, the De Kuip faithful showed their appreciation with some verve.
Feyenoord were on top from the first whistle and might have taken the lead in the first minute, but the ball veered just out of reach of Makaay who had taken up a good position. It was clear which way the wind was blowing however, as Feyenoord took the initiative.
The result was a couple of early chances. Sahin played a gorgeous through-ball to Makaay on sixteen minutes, but Maarten Stekelenburg was alert to the danger. Makaay did manage to get off a shot, but the Ajax keeper blocked. Van Bronckhorst tried to break the deadlock on 22, but his attempt went wide.
Van Bronckhorst was more accurate six minutes later though. Luigi Bruins got the attack going by playing in Makaay. The striker knocked an inch-perfect ball into Van Bronckhorst, who punched in a drive that left Stekelenburg with no chance. Feyenoord had the lead.
They might have doubled it soon after via De Guzman. The Canadian found himself with time and space in front of the Ajax goal, but Stekelenburg saved well again.
Ajax were finding it difficult to get into the game, but they did threaten on a number of occasions. Luis Suárez was dangerous, but his shots lacked precision. Klaas Jan Huntelaar went closer with a free kick, but the ball landed on the roof of the net.
Ajax coach Adrie Koster decided to replace two of his strike trio at the break to try to inject some life into his side’s attack. Suárez and Alberto Luque both remained in the dressing room, while Dennis Rommedahl and Kennedy Bakircioglu entered the action in their place. Bert van Marwijk on the other hand declined to change his team at the break, although his hand was forced within four minutes of the second half getting underway. Makaay was clearly still feeling the effects of a first-half clash with John Heitinga. Michael Mols replaced him.
Koster’s switch paid off almost immediately. Rommedahl it was who grabbed the equaliser for the visitors. The pass came from Huntelaar and the Dane finished with a deadly drive from the edge of the penalty area right in the top corner.
Feyenoord kept up the pressure after the leveller however. Within a few minutes Bruins had shot just wide, while Mols also went close when put through by Lee. An Ajax leg deflected the effort for a corner.
Ajax were somewhat more fortunate at the other end. Heitinga’s free kick was only half cleared by De Guzman and the ball landed at the feet of Siem de Jong. His cross-goal shot snuck in the corner to give the Amsterdammers the lead.
With more than twenty minutes left of the game Feyenoord went all out to get themselves level and something out of the match. By that time Ajax were down to ten men after the injured Ogararu was forced off the field of play. Koster had already used all his substitutes.
The equaliser wasn’t long in coming. Maduro gave away a penalty by bringing down Mols. Lucius missed from the spot, but De Guzman was there to sweep the rebound into the net.
Substitute Andwélé Slory almost grabbed a winner right at the death, but the youngster came out second best in a double encounter with visiting keeper Stekelenburg.
Feyenoord – Ajax 2-2
28’ Van Bronckhorst 1-0
51’ Rommedahl 1-1
67’ De Jong 1-2
73’ De Guzman 2-2
Bookings: Van Bronckhorst, De Guzman, Sahin, Vertonghen, Suárez, Heitinga, Maduro
Referee: De Bleeckere (Bel)
Feyenoord: Timmer; Lucius, Hofland, Bahia, De Cler; De Guzman, Sahin, Van Bronckhorst; Lee (69’ Slory), Makaay (49’ Mols), Bruins (79’ Wijnaldum)
Ajax: Stekelenburg; Ogararu, Van der Wiel (63’ De Jong), Heitinga, Vertonghen; Gabri, Maduro, Emanuelson; Luque (46’ Bakircioglu), Huntelaar, Suárez (46’ Rommedahl)