De Kuip was plunged into gloom Wednesday as Feyenoord slumped to an uncomfortable home defeat at the hands of AZ. The loss also saw the home side surrendering the third spot in the Eredivisie to the visitors. The reverse was compounded by the loss of Ramon van Haaren, who was stretchered off in the first half with another injury to his much-troubled right knee, after ending up as the meat in a Perez/Paauwe sandwich.

The loss of Van Haaren was compounded by the fact that Feyenoord had already lost of a goal on 22 minutes. Perez’s goal was somewhat against the run of play, although the home side’s ball hoarding hadn’t led to any major opportunities in front of goal, besides hopeful jabs by Pardo and Van Persie. The goal drove up Feyenoord’s tempo, but an equaliser was not forthcoming. Schreuder went close after a fine pass by Van Persie and Kees van Wonderen also looked likely to net, but his drive crashed against the bar. The home side’s biggest chance came as the first half reached its climax. Buffel got the rub of the green and found himself one on one with keeper Henk Timmer, but the Belgian couldn’t close out and Smolarek was also unable to make the most of the rebound. Straight after the turnaround things went from bad to worse for Feyenoord, when Elkhattabi made the most of the space that opened up for him in the box to nod AZ into a two-goal lead. The Rotterdammers continued to look for a way back (including Kuyt, from a Van Persie assist), but the goal was just as illusive as it was Sunday in Arnhem. Van Marwijk brought on Lazovic for Schreuder, but the slide continued to find things heavy going. The KO came halfway through the second period. When Swerts hauled down Elkhattabi in the area referee Bossen had no choice but to point to the spot. Landzaat converted to make it 0-3. Feyenoord-AZ 0-3 (0-1) 22’ 0-1 Perez 46’ 0-2 Elkhattabi 67’ 0-3 Landzaat (pen) Feyenoord: Lodewijks, Song, Van Wonderen, Paauwe, Van Haaren (32’ Swerts); Smolarek (67’ Lurling), Pardo, Schreuder (61’ Lazovic), Van Persie; Buffel, Kuyt. AZ: Timmer; Kromkamp, Reini, Opdam, De Cler; Landzaat, Bukserkmolen, Van Galen (57’ Lindenbergh); Elkhattabi, Huysegems (84’ Nelisse), Perez (67’ Wijker). Referee: R. Bossen Yellow cards: Huysegems, Opdam
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