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Thread: The Return of the Prodigal Sons

  1. #2451

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    A good win over Heerenveen

    Without Jordy Wehrmann - who picked up an injury in training and will be out for almost two weeks - we beat SC Heerenveen after an impressive first half.



    Unlike against Heracles we dominated the game in the first half and almost got an early opener when Bannis (who is absolutely on fire!) curled one in from long range, but he hit the crossbar.

    We played attractive pressing football and it was Janmaat who eventually found the net with the assist from El Bouchataoui, who replaced the injured Jordy Wehrmann. And six minutes later Zirkzee headed the ball for Wijnaldum to run into and our captain knew exactly where the goal was and doubled our lead!

    The crowd were delighted and it got even better, because just before the break Bannis scored the clinching goal. This time the assist was from Wijnaldum who lobbed the ball into the penalty area. Bannis stole a yard on his marker and half-volleyed the ball on his left foot and scored with a fabulous strike.

    We start the second half with Malacia for Verdonk and we continued to play well, but - understandably - without the same zeal as in the first half. After Zeneli had scored a consolation goal for Heerenveen we brought on some fresh legs. Haps and Summerville replaced Chong and Janmaat as wingbacks, but there were no more goals. Wijnaldum did find the net again, but it was ruled out for offside.

    Summary
    A superb team performance, especially in the first half. Our wingbacks played fantastically and Naoufal Bannis found the net for the fifth time this season already! In the second half Malacia also played well enough in his debut since his return to De Kuip and Wijnaldum was named Man of the Match.
    Spoiler!

    PSV are also on a winning streak. They have not conceded a single goal yet. The same can be said for FC Emmen, by the way.

    Ajax also won their game with Dolberg netting a brace, while FC Groningen also keep winning their games.



    There will be a short international break next and then it's Vitesse at the Gelredome Stadium, followed by several Champions League group games.




    Summer transfers

    We have only signed two new players and we have sold three young, talented players in order that they have ample game time. We will obviously keep a close eye on how they are developing.





    Ajax have signed more players than us, but so far only Kingsley Ehizibue has had consistent game time with their first team. They certainly have enough squad depth, though.





    PSV have considerably strengthened their squad and they have had a fantastic start to the season. PSV will tested though, as they will be playing Ajax at the Johan Cruijff Arena immediately after the international break.




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  3. #2452
    Not many changes over the summer, you’ve got a solid squad and few changes has helped you settle straight away. Just hope can take this for to Europe

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  5. #2453

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    Solid win in a game you should win solidly.
    Is it a concern that there have been no clean sheets yet this season ?
    The artist formally known as The Eejit

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  7. #2454

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kingsley View Post
    Solid win in a game you should win solidly.
    Is it a concern that there have been no clean sheets yet this season ?
    We've never scored so many goals or conceded this many (11-4) in our first three games of the season but it's early days, of course.

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    Our starting lineup against Vitesse

    Just before the international break we will be playing Vitesse who had a very poor start to the season, while Ajax will play PSV at the Johan Cruijff Arena!



    We have never scored so many goals and conceded so many, so we'll revert to our usual formation but with a striker pair rather than with Naoufal Bannis as shadow striker or attacking midfielder. So for the first time ever it will be a classic 4-4-2 formation.

    It's a logical choice, actually, because now that Malacia has returned to the club we have so many wingbacks and so many wingers that this would seem to be the best possible formation for us.

    Hopefully this will also make our defence water-tight again!

    Wouter Burger will replace the injured Jordy Wehrmann and Tijme Wessels (16) will replace Jerry St.Juste, sometimes referred to as 'our weakest link' since last season.





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  10. #2456

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    Nice win with a lot of good individual performances.

    Logical return to a flat back four and wide midfielders given the available material.

    Will be interesting to see if this helps steadying your defense though.

    By the way your start of the season is excellent despite the few goals you conceded.

    Maybe you can use 442 away and 352 at home.

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  12. #2457

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    An impressive win in Arnhem

    Whether it is because of the new formation or just coincidence, but we scored four goals and Bijlow kept a clean sheet against Vitesse at the Gelredome Stadium last night!



    It was an action-packed game and the clean sheet was partly because of luck, but be that as it may, our lads played well and we demolished Vitesse.

    Malacia was evidently enjoying his 'new' role as left wingback. In fact, he almost scored an early opener for us, but his fierce shot went over the bar. And the same went for Wouter Burger. And so Vitesse initially managed to withhold the pressure.

    And then Vitesse countered and should have scored, but Lobotka hit the crossbar! It was their first shot on goal, but they came so close! A few minutes later Wijnaldum shot on the volley and he also was unlucky as the ball hit the upright and rebounded away.

    Two minutes before half-time we finally scored. Bannis looked for Chong in the area and our left winger hit a speculative effort with his left foot and found the net! His teammates dived on top of him! After all, with Ajax playing PSV it was crucial that we should win this game.

    In the second half we started very cautiously, but with 57 minutes on the clock Bannis sent the ball over from the left and Zirkzee got up above the goalkeeper and scored to double our lead! Vitesse were demoralised now and just three minutes later Janmaat centred the ball from the right and Malacia (!) outjumped the goalkeeper and scored the clinching goal!

    We even got a fourth goal when Burger blasted the ball towards the top corner and Jensen did not even move!

    Vitesse should have gotten a consolation goal though, but when Campman blasted the ball towards goal it clipped the bar and went over.

    Summary
    It seemed a timely switch to the 4-4-2 formation. We outplayed Vitesse and with more than a little help from the woodwork Bijlow finally kept his first clean sheet of the season. Wessels struggled a bit though and Wijnaldum (!) was anonymous, but Burger found the net again, Bannis provided two assists and Malacia was named Man of the Match!
    Spoiler!

    And as we won our game at the Gelredome, Ajax defeated PSV who lost Alexis Sánchez to an unfortunate injury.

    By the way, this has caused a considerable amount of discussion in the media already as the 34-year-old veteran may have scored two goals from his first four appearances but he has been keeping Maximiliano Romero on the bench and Romero has always scored over 20 goals per season for PSV. In fact, a couple of years ago he scored no less than 36 goals!








    And so it is Olympiacos Piraeus next. The start of our new European campaign which our fans are so very much looking forward to!


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  14. #2458
    Maybe that answers who the biggest threat are this season...

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  16. #2459

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    Quote Originally Posted by James_y View Post
    Maybe that answers who the biggest threat are this season...
    Perhaps. It was a home game for Ajax and it took a penalty and a last-minute goal, but yes, they won.

  17. #2460

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    Impressive win and gives food for thought over tactics.
    Vitesse playing just 2 defenders does look like an odd formation
    Might have been better if PSV had won. Ajax appear to be stronger in the 2nd half of the season, so points off now might help.
    Dolberg is a goal machine. I'm amazed he hasn't gone to a bigger club
    The artist formally known as The Eejit

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  19. #2461

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kingsley View Post
    Impressive win and gives food for thought over tactics.
    Vitesse playing just 2 defenders does look like an odd formation
    Might have been better if PSV had won. Ajax appear to be stronger in the 2nd half of the season, so points off now might help.
    Dolberg is a goal machine. I'm amazed he hasn't gone to a bigger club
    He is and he actually wants to be transfer-listed.




    PSV also have a goal machine in Romero, though. Makes you wonder why they signed Alexis Sánchez.


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  21. #2462

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    Our rivals for the title

    It's early days but last night at Veronica Inside they talked about our rivals for the title and because they came up with some interesting facts (or rumours?) here's a quick summary of what was discussed.

    Not surprisingly Ziyech, Dolberg and Stengs were mentioned as key players for Ajax who may very well be our main rivals this season after they defeated PSV (2-0) at the Johan Cruijff Arena. Especially because Ziyech returned to the club!







    However, there are some problems as well. Apparently both Simon Mignolet and Kasper Dolberg want to leave the club. And that might just be good news for us!






    Of course they also talked about PSV and their aging star players, who seem to perform well so far. But of course the season is still very young. And besides, PSV have a good number of quality players besides their 34-year-olds. Perhaps even more than Ajax do!















    PSV are having more problems than Ajax, though. That is, if we may believe the rumours. Romero is said to be upset that he lost his place to Alexis Sánchez and if that's true you can hardly blame him. But he is not the only unhappy player in Eindhoven.







    And so we may have some players complaining about lack of squad depth, but our rivals are facing more serious problems, even though we don't have the quality players like they do.

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  23. #2463

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    Our starting lineup against Olympiacos

    We will play Olympiacos with our 4-4-2 formation and with what's arguably our best possible lineup, so this means that Burger (and also Verdonk) will start out on the bench.

    Wehrmann's superb heading skills mean that he performs both defensive and attacking duties with set pieces. Burger, on the other hand, is a more attack-minded player and he tends to score more goals.



    Olympiacos will play a sweeper formation (1-4-3-2) which is not uncommon when two teams of different calibers meet. In that case the weaker team sometimes employs a sweeper. So perhaps they will park the bus.


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  25. #2464

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    Hansson not even on the bench ? Is he injured ?

    I think he's better than Idrissi and never lets you down.
    Last edited by LucasGills; 20-10-19 at 08:48 PM.

  26. #2465

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    Quote Originally Posted by LucasGills View Post
    Hansson not even on the bench ? Is he injured ?

    I think he's better than Idrissi and never let you down.
    Good point. We have many wingers, but Hansson indeed deserves opportunities to play.

  27. #2466

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    With the exception of Malacia, starting with shirt numbers 1-11.
    I assume Greek league is not selected as they are 1-18. If not then I think you will win easy
    Last edited by Kingsley; 20-10-19 at 09:49 PM.

  28. #2467
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    Catching up!

    • Flattering result v VVV in a close game but 100% shots on target worked for you
    • Zirkzee or anyone else with a release fee?
    • PSV getting Alexis – ooooooooooooooosht
    • Another fortunate win v Heracles – lots of chances coming against you which is worrying!
    • Burger – 2 goals in 2 games
    • Malacia – yessssssssssssssssssssssss
    • Looks a comfortable CL group!
    • Another close game v Heerenveen – your quality is currently edging these games but for sure a lot of chances are being created against you
    • Bloody hell – MASSIVE win v Vitesse who were decent last season! Good start under new formation!
    • El Hank first option off bench if you sub one of your strikers?
    • Olympiakos have a few names there – but you “should” come through it

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  30. #2468

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    An important win over Olympiacos

    The match wasn't decided until very late but we played well and we very much deserved this first European win of the season which is a good start to our European campaign.



    We had the home advantage, which helps a lot, and we had an early goal. From a cross by Summerville Wijnaldum set up Naoufal Bannis in the area and Bannis found the net wit a tap-in!

    The crowd went wild, but as so often happened, our lads became a little insecure now. Obviously they wanted another goal, but they also felt the need to defend and it must be added that Olymiacos' counters looked dangerous at times.

    And so at half-time the scoreline was still 1-0 and we brought on Wouter Burger for Jordy Wehrmann. Burger had already scored three goals this season, so he deserved another chance, but the main reason for the substitution was the fact that Wehrmann had received a yellow card in the first half.

    We dominated the game now and Zirkzee almost scored a bullet header but Gianniotis made a brilliant fingertip save to divert the ball wide.

    With less than half an hour remaining we brought on Tijme Wessels for the fatigued Daryl Janmaat and so St.Juste played as right wingback now. Wessels played with a lot of confidence but although we created one or two decent chances there were no further goals and as the clock ticked down the crowd got restless and our lads were getting more nervous.

    But finally, to our relief we scored the clinching goal! Chong had a go from long range and when Gianniotis saved but could not not hold onto the ball it was Wijnaldum who was in the right place to finish with a tap-in!

    Summary
    A match with an unnecessary nervous ending. St.Juste played remarkably well as right wingback, Malacia showed his value for the club again, Bannis is still on fire and Wijnaldum was named Man of the Match for the second time this season.
    Spoiler!







    As it turned out, all of the Dutch team started well. A Hakim Ziyech brace gave Ajax a 2-0 win over Lokomotiv Moscow while Maximiliano Romero netted a brace for PSV who started with an impressive home win over Real Sociedad. So with Alexis Sánchez injured Romero got game time again and used the opportunity to make a point!





    We play De Graafschap at De Vijverberg next. Everyone is fit and available so we actually have a 'luxury problem' again, but because it is an away game we will start with our best possible 4-4-2 formation.

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  32. #2469
    Nice start. I really think you can get through this stage this year. No reason you can’t beat all these sides at home and get at least one decent result on the road.

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  34. #2470

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    Good win to start the group. Gives you a platform to build on. That second goal could be important at the final reckoning.
    Bannis has been on fire since he competed the physiotherapy in the summer
    Good to keep the opponents distracted in europe for as long as possible (just don't be distracted yourself)
    The artist formally known as The Eejit

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  36. #2471
    You lost all three home games last season, if I remember correctly, so this is a big relief.

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  38. #2472

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    Quote Originally Posted by Effiong unmarked! View Post
    You lost all three home games last season, if I remember correctly, so this is a big relief.
    I had forgotten, but you're right! That was odd, especially as we did do well in the away games.

  39. #2473

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    Good solid win even if you played with the nerves of your supporters.

    Given the other teams in the group you should be able to qualify quite easily.

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  41. #2474

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    Quote Originally Posted by James_y View Post
    Nice start. I really think you can get through this stage this year. No reason you can’t beat all these sides at home and get at least one decent result on the road.
    Sounds realistic but as Effiong unmarked! reminded us, we lost all three of our home games last season

  42. #2475

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    Hansson and Idrissi to play against Graafschap

    We will play a very defensive De Graafschap side at De Vijverberg tonight and because we have just played a European game and we will have to play another one immediately after having played De Graafschap we will rest both of our wingers and have Emil Hansson replace Tahith Chong as left winger while Idrissi will replace Summerville as right winger.

    This is a match we need to win, but the Champions League is obviously more important to us and we want both Chong and Summerville to be 100% fit.





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