IT’S OFFICIAL: FEYENOORD THE BEST

Feyenoord cleaned up at the annual VVCS awards gala Wednesday with a prize in every category. Pierre van Hooijdonk scooped the Footballer of the Year, but Edwin Zoetebier (Best Keeper), Bert van Marwijk (Best Coach), Thomas Buffel (Best First Division player) and Robin van Persie (Young Player of the Year) also got the recognition they deserved. To cap it all the UEFA Cup holders took home the Club of the Season award too.

Bert van Marwijk will be proud of his Coach of the Year award, as it was voted for by his peers, the coaches of all Eredivisie and First Division clubs. Van Marwijk also had a huge hand in the Club of the Year award of course. Van Hooijdonk was unable to attend the celebration due to international commitments, but the big man did make an appearance by satellite from Noordwijk, where Oranje is preparing for Saturday’s Euro 2004 qualifier at home to Belarus. The Feyenoord goalmachine saw off Ajax’s Christian Chivu and last year’s winner PSV’s Mark van Bommel to take the honour. Robin van Persie edged out Mido of Ajax and Jordi Hoogstrate (FC Groningen) for the most promising youngster award, but like teammate Van Hooijdonk he too was unable to receive the prize personally as he is currently getting ready for Oranje Under 21s game against Belarus Under 21s. Thomas Buffel was able to accept his award in person. The youngster, who earned his Best Player of the First Division honour with Feyenoord feeder Excelsior, took time off from training camp with Belgium Under 21s to be present.
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