In the runup to the last match of the month the big unknown was how Feyenoord would respond to recent results. The heavy defeat in Heerenveen during the week had raised tensions in Rotterdam, but both Advocaat and Steven Berghuis had said on Friday that they were hopeful the lingering sense of irritation could be converted into something positive against PSV.
Neither the coach nor his captain was disappointed in that regard, as Feyenoord started the match with plenty of energy and motivation. Advocaat had somewhat surprisingly opted for a forward line of Ridgeciano Haps and Bryan Linssen rather than Luis Sinisterra and Nicolai Jørgensen. ‘We have to win this match by battling,’ explained Advocaat ahead of kick-off.
Things certainly went to plan in the first half, as the hosts scored three goals without reply. Feyenoord allowed PSV to make the play, but made the visitors fight for every metre and were extremely effective on the counter. An early goal by Mark Diemers – a hard shot on six minutes, after Lutsharel Geertruida had made inroads in the home defence – gave the hosts the best possible start.
That lead was doubled around the half-hour mark, as Berghuis showed his class with a fantastic goal. Picking it up on the right-hand side just outside the box, the midfielder moved inside before curling it in to the top-left hand corner. As if that was not enough, Bryan Linssen added a third before the break. A textbook counterattack exposed PSV and when the ball came to Linssen he calmly beat Yvon Mvogo to net.
When Ibrahim Sangaré managed to grab one back for PSV relatively early in the second half, the hosts could have become nervous, but they were able to stay in control without really even playing in the opposition half. And whenever the visitors did break through the home lines, Nick Marsman was up to the challenge, as the keeper put in a strong performance.
It meant that Feyenoord were able to end a fairly disappointing month on a positive note. The hosts bared their teeth when it mattered, securing three important points in the race for European qualification.Next up for Feyenoord is a trip to FC Groningen, currently sixth in the Eredivisie, on Sunday (kick-off 14:30 CET).