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False start for Feyenoord against Vitesse

Feyenoord began the new year with a hangover on Saturday evening. Coach Arne Slot’s side made a disappointing return to Eredivisie action after the winter break at De Kuip, where Vitesse snatched a 1-0 win.

The first 45 minutes of league football in 2022 was a tactical joust. The two sides were well matched, largely cancelling each other out. The result was few big chances. Tasked with ending a three-match winless run against Vitesse, Feyenoord found it hard to break down a solid Arnhem defence.

Slot brought on Cyriel Dessers past the hour mark to try to force the issue, but it was the visitors who found the breakthrough. Feyenoord defended stoutly all game and scarcely gave Vitesse a sniff, but when Justin Bijlow was caught far from his goal 20 minutes from time  the visitors took full advantage through Loïs Openda.

The hosts looked to have got back on terms not long after, but VAR ended Guus Til’s celebrations by chalking off the goal. The officials ruled Dessers offside at the time of Alireza Jahanbakhsh’s original shot on goal. Til almost made good his error late on, but his header sailed wide when he might have been expected to net.

It meant that Vitesse took all three points against Feyenoord for the second time this season. Arne Slot’s side will attempt to get back to winning ways at N.E.C. in Nijmegen on Sunday (kick-off 12:15 CET).

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