Archive for the ‘ Eredivise ’ Category

Netherlands vs Estonia Preview: Louis van Gaal’s men target five for five

Holland Team




Janmaat, De Vrij, Martins Indi, Blind
De Guzman, Sneijder, Strootman
Lens, Van Persie, Robben

Jaager, Morozov, Klavan, Teniste
Puri, Vunk, Vassiljev, Kink

Louis van Gaal will be without Newcastle United goalkeeper Tim Krul due to physical problems, while Klaas-Jan Huntelaar is being plagued by a knee injury and is unavailable, too.

Roma shot-stopper Maarten Stekelenburg could return between the sticks again after missing Oranje’s previous two games, while Van Gaal is likely to opt for a four-man defence consisting of promising youngsters who ply their trade in the Eredivisie.

Skipper Wesley Sneijder makes his comeback in midfield, with Robin van Persie leading the line in what promises to be a youthful-looking team.

Meanwhile, Estonia boss Tarmo Ruutli will have to make do without the likes of Taavi Rahn and Gert Kams due to injury.

Ruutli plans to field an experienced starting XI in Amsterdam, with talismanic striker Andres Oper expected to start as Estonia’s lone front-man, with Joel Lindpere offering support from midfield.

  • Netherlands are one of only two European teams that have yet to lose points in the qualification campaign for the 2014 World Cup, Russia being the other side.
  • Van Persie  needs only two more goals to equal the legendary Johan Cruyff’s record of 33 international strikes for Holland.
  • Feyenoord midfielder Tonny Vilhena was crowned European champion at Under-17 level less than a year ago, and could now make his debut at senior level.
  • Estonia have locked horns with Holland on two occasions so far, losing both at home and away in the qualification campaign for the 2002 World Cup.
  • The guests’ all-time leading goalscorer Oper plied his trade in the Eredivisie from 2005 until 2009 at Roda before leaving for Shanghai Shenhua, only to return to Netherlands one year later at ADO Den Haag.
  • Estonia are one of 21 Uefa members who have never featured at a European Championship or a World Cup.

Talent Watch: Tomas Kalas

Tomas Kalas


Tomáš Kalas  is a Czech footballer who plays for Eredivisie club Vitesse as a defender on loan from Chelsea. He is a right-sided centre-half who can also play at right-back. On 7 July 2010, he signed for English Premier League champions Chelsea for a reported figure of around £5.2 million, though agreed that he would stay at Sigma Olomouc for the remainder of the 2010–11 season. Kalas arrived at Chelsea for the second half of the 2010–11 season and the defender made his Chelsea reserve team debut in a 2–2 away draw to Aston Villa on 21 February.

Kalas rejoined Vitesse on a new loan deal until the end of the 2012–13 season. He also extended his contract with Chelsea until the summer of 2017. Kalas scored his first Eredivisie goal for Vitesse in a 3–0 defeat of FC Groningen on 16 September 2012.

Chelsea defender Tomas Kalas is considered one of the Czech Republic’s most promising players. At the age of 18 years-old, the centre-back who can also play at right-back is currently on loan at Dutch club Vitesse where he has established himself as a first team regular and gaining the necessary experience. Starting life at his hometown club of  Sigma Olomouc and he made one appearance in the first team after starting in a 2–0 victory over Slovan Liberec on 5 May 2010 before signing for Chelsea in July 2010 for a figure of £5.2 million. He immediately joined is former club on a years loan. With Olomouc producing a wealth of talent over the years such as Tomáš Ujfaluši, David Rozehnal and Radoslav Kováč, Kalas is considered the next big thing. When Chelsa signed Kalas, academy boss Neil Bath hailed his speed and technique, “”Tomas has signed but will spend the first year on  loan at  his club, Sigma Olomouc in the Czech Republic,” said Bath. ”

Talent Watch: Davy Klaassen

Davy Klaassen




Davy Klaassen  is a Dutch professional football player, currently playing as a Striker for Dutch side Ajax Amsterdam and Netherlands U-19.  He made his debut for the first team in the UEFA Champions League group stage away draw (0–0) against Olympique Lyonnais on 22 November 2011 by replacing Lorenzo Ebecilio in the 85th minute. He made his Eredivisie debut on November 27 as a substitute against NEC Nijmegen and scored a minute later.

Joining Ajax at the age of 11 in 2004, Davy Klaassen has been part of ‘Jong Ajax’, an academy which has produced players like Dennis Bergkamp, Wesley Sneijder and Johan Cruyff. The 19 year-old striker made his debut in November 2011 against NEC and scored a minute later to join fellow graduates Johan Cruyff, Patrick Kluivert and Marco van Basten in making his debut. He first built a reputation during the AEGON Future Cup tournament in 2010 when Klaassen was voted player of the competition. His stock continued to rise in 2012 in the NextGen Series where he has scored six goals, only one behind Barcelona’s Jean-Marie Dongou. During the semi-final Ajax tore Liverpool apart with a convincing 6-0 victory where Klaassen scored twice and drew comparisons to Bergkamp. He is currently captain of the Netherlands Under-19 side and has attracted attention to Manchester United.


Eredivisie : 2011–12

Talent Watch: Nicolai Boilesen

Nicolai Boilesen


Nicolai Møller Boilesen is a Danish professional footballer, who currently plays for Ajax Amsterdam in the Dutch Eredivisie championship. He has played 48 games for various Danish youth national teams.

Considered one of Denmark’s finest prospects is 20 year-old defender Nicolai Boilesen who is primarily a left-back but can also operate at centre-back. Starting life at Brondby, Boilesen joined Ajax after his contract expired in December 2009, with the Dutch outfit paying compensation. He decided to join Ajax on the advice of fellow Danish youth international Christian Eriksen, despite having trained with Manchester United and interesting a number of Premier League clubs.

Making his debut on 3 April 2011 for Ajax he is still trying to establish himself as a first team regular, though struggled during the 2011/12 season with a string of injuries. Capped twice by Denmark at senior level, Boilesen stands at 6ft 1 inches and is an imposing figure. Strong in the air, Boilesen is also a good tackler of the ball and is good in possession. Technically excellent as you would expect from most Ajax academy graduates he possess good leadership qualities and captained Denmark at youth level.

Playing with a sense of maturity far beyond his years he has been likened to Daniel Agger, though some believe his style is more similar to that of Van Der Wiel with his constant runs down the flanks. A number of clubs from around Europe are keeping progress on the Danish starlet and with Sir Alex Ferguson looking for a long-term successor to Patrice Evra, Boilesen could well join the ranks at Old Trafford in the no so distant future.


Eredivisie : 2010–11, 2011–12
Danish Talent of the Year : 2011

Talent Watch: Zakaria Labyad

Zakaria Labyad


Despite the season’s ups and downs, Zakaria Labyad finished 2011-12 as a real star among PSV’s squad. He won the KNVB Beker with the club and recorded 12 goals and 16 assists in all competitions. In short, things were going very, very well for Labyad.

But after a very public falling out with the higher ups at PSV, Labyad opted to leave for Sporting CP, a club that has fallen well behind the likes of FC Porto, Benfica and Braga in recent years. But that by itself wasn’t the problem.

The problem arose in Labyad’s competition. At PSV, Labyad was easily first-choice. At Sporting, Labyad faced competition on the flanks from Diego Capel, Andre Carrillo, Marat Izmailov and Jeffren. And unfortunately, thus far, management has favored Capel, Carillo and Izmailov over Labyad.

Management at Sporting changed towards the end of October as Sporting’s results continued to head south, but there has been no shift in attitude towards Labyad. He got some playing time in Sporting’s miserable Europa League campaign, but league playing time has remained equally scarce. Now the days of Labyad terrorizing the Eredivisie are a distant memory, and despite declaring his allegiance to the Morocco national team, he was not included in the squad for upcoming Africa Cup of Nations. Of course, a run of playing time and productive play on the pitch could change Labyad’s fortunes dramatically in a short span of time. But for now, the break that Labyad needs does not appear to be in sight.

The talent is definitely there, but when it will be given the opportunity to be put on display is another question entirely.

Zakaria Labyad is a Moroccan footballer playing for Sporting Clube de Portugal as a attacking midfielder in the Portuguese Primeira Liga. The player has previously represented the Netherlands U-17 team at international level before switching his allegiance to Morocco and playing for them at the Under-23 level. His father is his agent.


KNVB Beker: 2011–12

Real Madrid vs Ajax Preview

Jose Mourinho goes into the match knowing that their second place finish in Group D is secured. Due to their head-to-head results with Borussia Dortmund they cannot win the group, so the Real Madrid coach may opt to freshen up his starting XI.

It is unlikely to be a complete overhaul, but Raphael Varane has been impressive in his rare appearances this season, and may be given a starting berth at the back due to Alvaro Arbeloa’s suspension. Sergio Ramos could be shifted out to right-back.

Xabi Alonso has been playing a lot of football recently and may be allowed to sit this one out, with Luka Modric ready to drop back into the deeper role in midfield.

Despite resting some faces, Mourinho will still want to end the Group Stage on a high, so expect big hitters Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema to still feature.

Ajax, on the other hand, have plenty to play for. The Eredivisie champions are placed third in the group and find themselves one point ahead of Manchester City, and with a place in the Europa League up for grabs, they will need to put in a good performance at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Ryan Babel is still sidelined with a dislocated shoulder, so there could be a chance in attack for Danny Hoesen, who scored in Ajax’s 3-1 victory over PSV at the weekend.

  •  These two sides have met five times in the past three seasons and Madrid have won each game, most recently a 4-1 victory in Amsterdam in October.
  • Real Madrid’s seven-game winning streak at home in the Champions League was ended by a 2-2 draw with Dortmund on matchday four.
  • Los Blancos‘ home record against teams from the Netherlands is W9 D1 L2.
  • Ajax have failed to win on any of their last five visits to Spain, losing four. Their last success was a 3-2 victory at Atletico Madrid in the 1996/97 season.
  •  During four years as a Barcelona player between 1999 and 2003, Ajax coach Frank de Boer faced Madrid nine times in the Liga and the Champions League.
  • De Boer played under Madrid coach Jose Mourinho at Barcelona. The Portuguese was assistant to Louis van Gaal in the year 2000.

Ajax vs Borussia Dortmund Preview


Something will have to give when Ajax welcome Borussia Dortmund to the Amsterdam Arena on Wednesday evening.

The Eredivisie champions hold a proud unbeaten record against German sides at home and will need to be at their best to continue that record against Jurgen Klopp’s men, who are undefeated in the group and will qualify with a win or a draw.

The hosts are sweating over the fitness of goalkeeper Kenneth Vermeer. He missed Saturday’s win over VVV-Venlo due to illness but returned to training on Sunday and could make the starting XI.

A certain omission from the squad will be forward Ryan Babel, who has been ruled out for several weeks after dislocating his right shoulder. Thulani Serero and Kolbeinn Sigthorsson are long-term absentees and are likely to miss the entire group stage.

Dortmund coach, Klopp, has the luxury of having the vast majority of his squad available for the trip to the Netherlands, and it is unlikely he will deviate from the starting XI that was so impressive against Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Die Borussen were given a lift last week when Jakub Błaszczykowski made his return from an ankle injury for Poland against Uruguay. However, he may not oust Keven Grosskreutz from the starting line-up for the European tie.

  • Ajax have posted 12 wins in 13 home games in Amsterdam against Bundesliga sides and have not tasted defeat.
  • Denmark midfielder Christian Eriksen has run 52,181m so far in the competition; more than any other player in the group stage.
  • Niklas Moisander has completed 236 of his 280 attempted passes; only four players have managed more in the
    group stage.
  • Dortmund are seeking their first away win in the
    competition since beating AC Milan at San Siro in March 2003.
  • The German side failed to score for the first time in 27 games on November 3, as they were held to a 0-0 draw by
  • Roman Weidenfeller, Neven Subotic, Lukasz Piszczek, Marcel Schmelzer and Robert Lewandowski have played
    all 360 minutes of Dortmund’s group stage campaign so far.