Published on April 25th, 2017 | by David Kraakman0
Feyenoord on brink of famous title triumph under former Barca man
Despite a late charge by Ajax, Feyenoord’s fate is very much in their own hands with the club on the brink of a first league title this century
With just two games to go in the Netherlands, the fate of the Eredivisie title seems to have been determined. Under the guidance of ex-Barcelona player Gio van Bronckhorst, Feyenoord look set to win their first league title since 1999 after extending their lead over arch rivals Ajax to four points with a crucial away win on Sunday.
It was sixth-placed Vitesse that hosted De Rotterdammers this weekend in a game that beforehand was judged as the last real hurdle in Feyenoord’s quest for the title. The home side knew what it takes to beat Feyenoord as they knocked out the league leaders in the quarter-finals of the Dutch cup earlier this season; the KNVB Beker.
With an ever expectant fan base, convinced of a win and therefore taking a major step towards the title, Feyenoord felt the pressure was on. Away to one of the best footballing clubs in Holland, it was never going to be easy. Feyenoord took the game by the scruff of the neck, however, and led by 2-0 inside the first half-an-hour. Talisman Nicolai Jorgensen grabbed both goals, underlining his value to the team.
Van Bronckhorst’s men consolidated their lead for the remainder of the game and when the final whistle was blown, a feeling of joy and relief dominated the Feyenoord dressing room. A feeling that only got bigger when chasers, Ajax, lost their game versus PSV Eindhoven later on in the day, meaning Feyenoord had all but claimed the title.
Ajax – probably too fatigued after their 120 minutes during the Europa League quarter-final vs. Schalke 04 that dramatically saw them progress to the next round – had built up some great momentum with impressive displays at home to Feyenoord and Schalke 04 in recent weeks. It wasn’t to be for De Amsterdammers, though, as PSV’s Jürgen Locadia bagged the only goal of the game and pretty much destroyed Ajax’s title hopes.
It’s not all over for Ajax as still have a lot to play for this season. In two weeks time, the Dutch record champions will play their first leg against. Olympique Lyon in the Europa League semi-finals. It has been a long time since the illustrious club has reached a European semi-final and with the finish line so close, Ajax feel confident of delivering on a stage where they’ve been so successful in the past.
The team managed by Peter Bosz will realize they are out of the title race, but still need to be aware of the danger PSV presents for the second place which means a Champions League qualification spot. Ajax might lead the 2015 and 2016 title-winners by three points, it was on the last day of last season that Ajax gifted the league to PSV.
Feyenoord could officially win the title by winning at least one of their last two fixtures. Two draws would probably be enough as well, given Feyenoord’s superior goal difference. It seems like a matter of when instead of if. It would be fitting, however, that the title will be won on the last match day in front of their own fans in De Kuip. History in the making.