Feyenoord and Hoang Anh Gia Lai FC have taken the first step towards a talent and coaching development partnership. The two...
After almost a month without a win, Feyenoord will be gunning to shoot down visitors FC Twente at De Kuip Sunday. For Erwin Koeman a victory is vital considering the recent record of just one point from nine that has seen Feyenoord slip to third in the table. The coach made that known to his playing staff too, a day after the let-down against ADO Den Haag. ‘It’s fortunate we didn’t suffer any lasting damage as we’re already in the play-offs. We are getting another chance. So we have to be up for it on Sunday,’ says Koeman.
Feyenoord will certainly have to improve on last week’s display if they are to see off FC Twente. Despite their lowly position, ADO Den Haag were simply too strong for the Rotterdammers. Logically then, FC Twente will be a tougher cookie still, with the Enschede team looking for points to secure themselves a place in the Uefa Cup section of the playoffs. Save last week’s loss to Heerenveen by the odd goal in three, caretaker coach Jan van Staa’s team are in great form and they will be looking to start another run to match the eight-match unbeaten sequence that Heerenveen ended.
The only position in the team where Koeman was unable to confirm or deny his selection two days before the game was left back. Pascal Bosschaart’s suspension leaves the coach with a choice between young gun Royston Drenthe and tried-and-tested André Bahia. If Koeman opts for Bahia he’ll most likely partner Ron Vlaar with Serginho Greene in the middle of defence. The coach trained with both variations Friday.
Koeman was willing to express his intentions with respect to other positions however. Unfortunate performances against AZ and ADO have weakened confidence in Maikel Aerts in some quarters, but Koeman is not considering a change. ‘I’m sticking with Aerts, I’ve not had any doubts about that.’ De Guzman is also set to play Sunday, although there is a chance that the Canadian will be rested ahead of the playoffs. ‘But not Sunday,’ confirmed Koeman. ‘He can say if he’s tired. He knows that won’t cost him his place in the long term. But that’s not on the agenda right now, we have another three games after Sunday.’
Koeman pulled no punches after the loss to ADO Den Haag, which he felt was not of the same order as the disappointing results against AZ and RKC. ‘Against AZ it was a familiar story and against RKC we created ten chances. But last Sunday we could have played for another hour and we still wouldn’t have scored. We really had a poor game and we talked about it. It may have crept in that there is little pressure because of the playoffs. Without those playoffs we would now be under pressure to claim second spot. We want to get second now too, but the focus is already on the playoffs. So the pressure to get second is lower, which is fortunate but at the same time it is contrary to the nature of an elite sports club.’
Feyenoord – FC Twente
Sunday 2 April, 14:30 at De Kuip
Feyenoord: Aerts; Collen, Greene, Vlaar, Bahia; Hofs, Paauwe, De Guzman; Castelen, Kuyt, Kalou.
FC Twente: Pasveer; Loumpoutis, Zomer, Niemeyer, Ouedraogo; Brama, Bakircioglu, Sibum; Touma, N’Kufo, Gerritsen.
LAST TEN LEAGUE MEETINGS
12/9/2004 Feyenoord - FC Twente 3-1
1/2/2004 Feyenoord - FC Twente 3-2
2/2/2003 Feyenoord - FC Twente 4-2
24/2/2002 Feyenoord - FC Twente 1-2
18/3/2001 Feyenoord - FC Twente 5-1
25/9/2005 FC Twente - Feyenoord 1-3
29/1/2005 FC Twente - Feyenoord 0-0
13/12/2003 FC Twente - Feyenoord 4-2
14/9/2002 FC Twente - Feyenoord 1-5
19/12/2001 FC Twente - Feyenoord 3-2