‘The confidence is back,’ said a satisfied Feyenoord head coach Giovanni van Bronckhorst on Friday afternoon, two days ...
It’s a return to Eredivisie action Sunday when RKC come to De Kuip with Feyenoord looking for their sixth successive win. Three goals against Hearts in midweek mean that the Rotterdammers have rattled in 17 in the last five games. Domestically, meanwhile, the Maassiders have scored more league goals than any other team this season, but with coach Gullit demanding more focus in front of goal, a cracking match is in prospect against Erwin Koeman’s Waalwijk-based outfit.
Gullit was unhappy about the shedload of chances that his side passed up in last week’s win at Roda and a raft of opportunities also went by the way in the win against Hearts. ‘The 3-0 final score was great, but we have to hurt our opponents more. We should have made it 2-0 before the break. That is so important, it’s how you demoralise your opponents. It’s the deathblow. Instead, Hearts continued to believe for a while, just like Roda Sunday. That has to improve, although it was already much better Thursday than it was Sunday.’
Feyenoord came through the Hearts game without picking up any knocks and the performance would suggest that Gullit has little need to change his line-up. The only potential switch comes at right back, where Chong-Gug Song stepped down on Thursday and took a seat in the stands. Gianni Zuiverloon was handed his first start by the coach, but with the youngster still at school and facing some tough exams next week it’s unlikely that he’ll be handed a second Sunday. That’s why Gullit may be tempted to name crowd favourite Chris Gyan in his eleven.
The coach was unwilling to publicise his decision Friday, but he did have something to say about the position of his Korean defender. ‘Song doesn’t speak English or Dutch and I don’t know what he’s thinking. Communication is really tough and I don’t know whether he understands what I say to him. He keeps saying ‘yes’, but then I don’t see him doing it on the pitch. So I start to think he doesn’t understand. On top of that he hasn’t been playing as well and that’s why I decided to leave him out of the match squad. I’m hoping to motivate him. Karim Saidi has just got here, but he is able to communicate. He speaks the language of football.’
Holland Casino Eredivisie
Date: Sunday 24 October
Time: 2:30 pm
Place: De Kuip
Feyenoord: Babos; Zuiverloon (Gyan), Saidi, Paauwe, Basto; Castelen,
Ono, Bosschaart, Goor; Kuyt, Kalou.
RKC: Sinouh; Van Hintum, Texeira, Greene, Van Diemen; Fuchs, Schreuder,
Takak; Krohn-Dehli, Hoogendorp, Putter
LAST TEN ENCOUNTERS
21/3/2004 Feyenoord - RKC 1-0
11/5/2003 Feyenoord - RKC 2-1
31/3/2002 Feyenoord - RKC 1-1
9/9/2000 Feyenoord - RKC 3-1
26/9/1999 Feyenoord - RKC 1-2
21/12/2003 RKC – Feyenoord 0-0
23/11/2002 RKC – Feyenoord 1-0
28/11/2001 RKC – Feyenoord 2-3
1/4/2001 RKC - Feyenoord 2-0
2/4/2000 RKC - Feyenoord 2-2