Striker Pierre van Hooijdonk for one, isn’t mincing his words, “We now have to turn up the heat,” he says and the Feyenoord legion would agree with every word. The home side go into the game surely full of confidence after impressing against Rangers and Ajax. “I hope we can continue along the same path,” trainer Bert van Marwijk said at the Friday press conference. But as we all know, past performances do not guarantee success in the future.
Despite his side leaving the Arena last week with a heap of praise Van Marwijk does appear to be ready to change his team on the left of defence, where Mauricio Aros looks likely to start ahead of Tomasz Rzasa. “You know I never say anything in advance about my team,” the trainer said. “I would say that Mauricio is getting more and more used to Holland and the way we play here.” Aros himself is more than ready to get busy. “I had hoped to get on against Ajax when the trainer told me to warm up. Unfortunately it didn’t happen. If the trainer puts me in on Sunday I’ll be all geared up.” The Chilean celebrates his 26th birthday Saturday and will hope for the ultimate present.
Otherwise Feyenoord will have a familiar look. Ferry de Haan and Chris Gyan did rejoin training Friday after long layoffs, but the game would appear to have come too soon for the twosome. Van Marwijk: “They’ve both been out for a while and they lack rhythm.”
Zoetebier; Emerton, Van Wonderen, Paauwe, Aros; Kalou, Bosvelt, Ono, Van Persie; Tomasson, Van Hooijdonk
Moens; Lee, Fortes Rodriquez, Wijker, El Hadrioui; Robbemond, Perez, Buskermolen, Alair; Nelisse, Dibi