‘The confidence is back,’ said a satisfied Feyenoord head coach Giovanni van Bronckhorst on Friday afternoon, two days ...
Erwin Koeman saw his side throw away two points Saturday when Feyenoord were shown to be incapable of rolling over Eredivisie basement club RBC in Roosendaal. The Rotterdammers spent must of the match behind, after conceding two early goals (Kpaka and Loran), and although Sebastián Pardo got the visitors back into it halfway through the first half, the equaliser didn’t come until 73 minutes when Jonathan de Guzman secured a point. The game was preceded by a minute’s silence to commemorate the untimely death of FC Utrecht player David di Tommaso last week.
Erwin had expressed confidence in his team’s mindset ahead of a meet with the bottom side in the league, but Feyenoord experienced the worst possible start when the defence failed to get their offside trap down properly. Kpaka exploited the clanger by striking the ball past Patrick Lodewijks to put the home side ahead in the first minute.
It not only meant Feyenoord were playing catch-up, but it also injected confidence into the bottom side’s play as RBC went on the attack looking to finish off Feyenoord early doors. The clock stood at 18 minutes when Loran headed in an Edgar Marcelinho cross to leave Feyenoord with a tough task on their hands. The Rotterdammers might have got a goal of their own by then, after Salomon Kalou had danced through the home defence, but Jorge Acuña had cleared off the line.
With the deficit now doubled Pardo took up the gauntlet, getting Feyenoord back into the match three minutes later with a long-distance shot that had keeper Volders well beaten. Indeed, the Chilean was clearly bent on adding to his total with a couple more efforts that tested the home goalie’s resolve, but while Volders had started a little nervously, as the half wore on he gained more and more confidence.
Kalou should have dented that confidence just ahead of the break, but his header lacked the requisite power.
By then his coach had decided to intervene, hauling off defender Snoyl for striker Biseswar on 37. A rollicking at the break and that tactical substitution were all Koeman could rely on. The coach must have felt emasculated as his side found it difficult to make the breakthrough at the start of the second half. Feyenoord did put the home side under pressure, with corners coming thick and fast, but ultimately they had nothing to show for it save a miss-hit shot from Kuyt that didn’t deserve to be called a chance.
The game was 65 minutes old when the visitors created their first threatening opportunity after the turnaround, as Kuyt hit the post with a drive. Seven minutes later his strike partner Kalou went one better, getting the ball into the net only to see his goal ruled out for offside. But the Maassiders had their equaliser within a minute, when De Guzman played two wall passes off Kuyt before beating Volders at the near post.
The leveller had the Feyenoord entourage expecting more, but despite pinning RBC back for the rest of the match, the visitors could not find the breakthrough that would have given them the win.
RBC Roosendaal – Feyenoord 2-2
1´ 1-0 Kpaka
18´ 2-0 Loran
21´ 2-1 Pardo
73´ 2-2 De Guzman
Yellow: De Lange, Östlund
RBC: Volders; Loran, Molenaar, Roumani, Fleur; Daelemans, De Lange, Acuña; Kpaka, Elkhattabi (84´ Smolders), Marcelino (69´ Paap).
Feyenoord: Lodewijks; Östlund, Paauwe, Bahia, Snoyl (38´ Biseswar); Ghaly, Pardo, De Guzman; Boussaboun, Kuyt, Kalou.