The atmosphere in de Kuip was unsurprisingly top notch, but the home side made a somewhat unsure impression in the opening twenty minutes, although the next seventy where all Feyenoord.
After Shabani Nonda shot into the side netting following some good Rovers build-up play, Feyenoord started to take control of proceedings. On 21 minutes Charisteas got the crowd on its feet when he laced the ball between two defenders to carve himself a one-on-one with Friedel, but the finish was not quite on a par with the groundwork as the visitors’ keeper got down to push the Greek’s shot away.
Charisteas would have another opportunity to pit himself against the American goalie not long after, when he got his head to the ball despite having no earthly right to, but despite the striker’s best efforts, he could not direct his header into the goal.
Feyenoord had an even bigger chance to get their noses in front just before the break though. This time Theo Lucius released Danny Buijs, who played an unselfish ball into Nicky Hofs. The midfielder let rip with a drive that beat the keeper, but not André Ooijer, who cleared.
The match was an entertained affair mainly thanks to the home side’s endeavour, but the only thing that was lacking from Feyenoord’s play was a nose in front of goal. That continued to apply in the second half as Charisteas and Huysegems both tried their luck with shots that lacked the necessary power to trouble Friedel.
Those were the last chances for a while as Feyenoord were not able to threaten the Blackburn goal despite some fine combinations further down the park. The English team appeared happy to hold on for the draw, which given the state of the game was more than they truly deserved. Mark Hughes’ side did try to catch the Rotterdammers on the counter, but there was a lack of edge in the visitors’ forward line.
The match still had a quarter of an hour on the clock when Erwin Koeman raised a cheer by bringing on De Guzman for Hofs. The home crowd was still hoping for the goal that would bring all three points and De Guzman’s well documented ball skills certainly threw extra weight in the scales in favour of Feyenoord.
But despite continuing to work hard Feyenoord were unable to create the chance and finish it properly. Indeed, Robbie Savage went close to stealing the points near the end when he raced into the box, only to slide his shot past the post.
Feyenoord – Blackburn Rovers 0-0
Bookings: Lucius, Drenthe, Savage
Feyenoord: Timmer; Tiendalli, Lucius, Bahia, Drenthe; Buijs, Greene, Hofs (76’ De Guzman); Kolkka (64’ Boussaboun), Charisteas, Huysegems
Blackburn Rovers: Friedel; Emerton, Ooijer, Khizanishvili, Gray; Savage, Tugay (80’ Mokoena), Pedersen, Bentley; Nonda (68’ Jeffers), McCarthy (89’ Peter)