Netherlands: Title showdown looms for Ajax and Twente
With just one game left to play in the Dutch Eredivisie the situation at the top of the table couldn’t be any more exciting. Defending champions FC Twente Enschede lead nearest challengers Ajax Amsterdam by just one point with the two teams going head-to-head in the Amsterdam ArenA in a fortnight’s time.
This weekend saw FC Twente easily put the challenge of Willem II Tilburg to one side with a 4-0 victory. Goals from Luuk de Jong, Douglas and Theo Janssen as well as an own goal from Tilburg’s Dragan Jelič ensured that the Enschede club preserved the lead going into the final day and also sealed Willem’s relegation to the second division next season. Second placed Ajax visited SC Heerenveen needing a win to stay in title contention but things didn’t get off to a good start for Ajax as Heerenveen’s Mika Väyrynen gave them the lead after 19 minutes but Ajax weren’t down for very long, restoring parity just sixty seconds later thanks to Miralem Sujemani. The decisive goal of the match came just a minute into the second half when Christian Eriksen gave Ajax a lead they would never relinquish and sets up a double-header of crucial matches involving themselves and FC Twente who, as well as playing each other in the final matchday of the Dutch league, will also meet meet in the KNVB Beker (Dutch Cup) final in Rotterdam’s De Kuip stadium this coming Sunday, May 8th.
PSV Eindhoven are three points behind FC Twente but cannot expect to win the championship now as whatever happens in the Ajax v FC Twente game will lead to one of those two teams winning the championship shield. Nevertheless PSV did win their home game against Vitesse Arnhem on Sunday by two goals to one and still hope of snatching the second UEFA Champions League spot.