Robin van Persie is back!

We’re smack in the middle of one of those generation gaps. It happens with smaller football nations. Belgium’s gaps are longer than their peaks. Denmark had a trough but seems to be coming back. Hungary is been missing in action for 50 years. We have had them before. Right after the 1970s golden years was the biggest one of course. NT coach Danny Blind did not pick an easy road. After two World Cup top 4 spots and the Golden Four entering their autumn (Robben, Sneijder, Van Persie) and winter stages (Van der Vaart),

We discuss our current top players (a utility player of Liverpool, a box to box player at Swansea, a make shift center back at Watford, a bench warmer at Man United, an inconsistent right back at Feyenoord) and even throw some players in the mix who hardly played a handful of top flight games for their Euro sub top club (Nouri, Diks).

Robben and Sneijder are the two old hands who help Blind carry the load. Robin van Persie should be the third world class player to return to the fold, in my honest opinion. He’s been in the cold for a couple of seasons now, but Robin is back. Fighting fit and motivated. His story…

robin smiles

Currently, Robin van Persie (33)is in his best period in years, as the Fenerbahce striker. Blind still doesn’t give him a look in at Oranje. Robin’s views… “The team manager makes the decisions. Not me. It’s that simple. But, the team is in transition and why wouldn’t I be able to help?”

His wide open mouth, the near insane look in his eyes. These images are still everywhere in Istanbul. On the front pages, posters and Turkish tv. Even in commercials. Robin van Persie, wild with joy, scoring against arch rival Galatasaray (2-0).

Even now, weeks later, this is still the topic that matters. “Oh man! The joy I felt. It was a serious explosion. Everything tried to get out. Literally, everything. I needed that!”


Robin van Persie clenches his fist when he says this, in the relax room of the Fener training complex, in the Asian part of town. Historical black and white pics on the wall. “A few days before the match I visited a Turkish friend, and he told me: as long as you haven’t scored against Gala, you are not really a Fener player.” And he meant it. All supporters think like this. You can play well, you can score a lot, all well and good, but what really counts here is being the decider of the derby.”

And we see it a day later in the Sukru stadium, when Van Persie plays versus Besiktas (0-0). His difficult first season at the club, it hasn’t had any negative influence on his popularity with the Blue-Yellow fans. He is the first player they cheer and call to the fan-zone behind the goal for a crazy cheering ritual. An ear deafening roar comes into the stadium. Dick Advocaat: “Robin is the most popular player here. But, that already was the case before the Gala match.”

robin fey

Advocaat has said it before. His striker is top fit, fresh in his head and pretty darn good. Against his old club Feyenoord, Van Persie didn’t shine but he played a solid role in service of the team. And in mid week games, his coach tends to rest the old fox. He’s not 22 anymore but he is the number one striker for Fenerbahce. His statistics are clear in the months October and November. The player starts to look more and more like his old self.

“Fun, just pure fun! Fun in playing, the matches, the practices. Carefully prepared passing and finishing practices. Sharp games. Even a good warming up is something to cherish. When expectations are high, I can perform at my best. I missed that drive, to be honest with you. Last season was no fun. My last season at Man United wasn’t great either. It was a struggle in many ways. And you only notice this when the joy is back. That gives you a mental boost. It’s liberating and I think it also affects your physical strength and fitness.”

You were presented as a super signing, but you couldn’t deliver on that promise. At all.

“I know what you mean. Things didn’t go the way I wanted it. There were several factors at play. I personally think the “he is not fit” element wasn’t even that big a thing. The media and the outside world made that more important. There were other things too. I am not the kind to look back in anger and say nasty things about people, but lets just say that things turned around very positively when Dick Advocaat came. However, I did score 22 goals last season, so it wasn’t that big a drama I don’t think.”

“Crisis? What Crisis??”

How was Advocaat turning things around?

“He makes the difference, with Cor Pot and Mario Been. The way we train, the way we play, the discipline in and off the pitch, the clarity in the vision. We had a good meeting, when Dick came in and he was honest, sharp and critical. He said “I have high expectations of you. I want you to carry the team, to lead”. I enjoy that Dutch directness. That is what we need.”

You did have a personal trainer working with you for months. He even lived with the family. Did that work?

“For sure! I needed to do more in that period. I felt that, but I couldn’t fit it into the usual practice sessions. I have now ended those personal sessions but it has strengthened my foundation, that is what it is. The last percentages of progress I booked through playing matches.”

When Dick Advocaat came in August, he was sceptical about the striker. Again, Robin was injured. The former Zenit and Sunderland coach wanted to see what Robin could do. Advocaat: “I had my doubts yes. No team can carry a player who can’t reach a certain level anymore. Not in the big games. But, when you saw his fitness return, you could easily see what an incredible player he still is.”

Dick RVP

Still, a return to Oranje is not happening. When Vincent Janssen and Luuk de Jong demonstrated to lack form and rhythm, against Belgium and Luxembourg, Blind still didn’t make that call. Dick Advocaat decides to pass on this topic. “It’s sensitive in any situation for a coach to make a comment about that, but I assisted Danny for a spell so it’s not appropriate for me to comment. But, I am happy that I don’t need to make those decisions.”

Van Persie takes a breath and moves around a bit when the subject is broached. “I want to pick my words properly but I don’t want to beat around the bush. But, for starters, it’s the coach’ decision. That is how it works. But, I think I have earned the right to say something about it, based on my history with Oranje? And why wouldn’t I be able to give my viewpoint?”

And how do you see it?

“When I see Vincent Janssen play, I can see he is a good striker. For real. He’s got the intuition, the work ethics, he has courage and confidence. But, I can also see little things in his game that can improve. It’s details, I know, but I am sure I can help him. This is how Ruud van Nistelrooy worked with me. Obviously, Vincent needs to be open to it, but I’ve played eleven seasons in the EPL and scored a couple of goals for Oranje so I think I can help in this process. Obviously, it’s weird to be saying this knowing that Luuk de Jong and Bas Dost will not be too happy with me talking myself into the squad… I do respect them as players as well.”


Could you live with a role as second striker?

“I probably couldn’t four years ago, haha, but when things are made clear and there is communication and the first striker is the man in form and better than, why not? And you can make decisions based on the game at hand. I can play in four roles upfront. Here at Fener I play the #10 role as well at times. If there is a will, we can find a way. And I’m no fool! I know the generation Sneijder/Robben/Van Persie/Van der Vaart is phasing out. That is only natural. The Dutch NT is in a transformation stage and Janssen might well be the striker for the next ten years. But that will not happen within a day or week or month. Why wouldn’t I be able to support that process?”

It seems that Blind doesn’t recognise this role in you?

“It’s quite possible we don’t have a click personally. And that’s ok. But I do hope the professional will win against the personal. It’s not about him or me. It’s about Oranje. That is the main thing.”

Things happened between you and Memphis on the training pitch, among other things. Could the past play a role?

“I don’t know. I can be quite direct, I know. But in some case it is needed. It’s part of top sports. If you want to be top and perform to the max, you need to be able to tell each other your truth. And a clash, sharp, head to head, it’s ok. It’s not always a bad thing. And then you need to be able to let it go. I actually saw Memphis at Man United some time back and asked him: Memphis, you still pissed off at me. And he said no. So that’s it. Done. And I have always put a lot of energy in young players. I love that. Talking, helping, feel free to ask them.”

RVP Memphis

Can you imagine Blind might think: Van Persie in a secondary role, that’s not going to work?

“No idea. He might think that. But, it’s a matter of management, isn’t it? That is important in being a coach, apart from coaching. It’s managing the personalities in a team. I scored twice against Gala, but for the next game against Zorya, three days later, Advocaat told me: you won’t play. And I said: What? I feel great. I want to play! But Advocaat said he felt the next competition game was more important. End of story. And that’s cool. It’s clear and open and honest. I’m now 33 years old. I’m starting to wisen up a bit.”

But in all seriousness, the last couple of years, the coaches of Oranje would not have a lot of reason to select you. You didn’t play great and you weren’t fit

“I hear what you say. I sort of lost the fun in the game. And I have to blame myself for this. But not every period is the same. People will say I am biased, but I did have some good periods as well.”

Like right before this last international break, for the Luxembourg and Belgium games?

“Yes exactly. And I do get Oranje is in a process and Blind is looking for consistency and all that. You want to grow and develop towards the World Cup. That is the way to do it, but at the same time, football is also today. Now. You need to get results now as well.”

RVP oranje

Did Blind ever call you or ask you about this other role in the squad?

“No he didn’t and to be honest, that puzzles me a bit. I mean, if he doesn’t want to select me, fine. That is his prerogative. He is the coach. But Danny worked with me in his time as assistant of Van Gaal and I think we worked well together. We’ve known each other for years. Why wouldn’t you just pick up the phone and talk about it? You don’t have to go with my ideas, but why not talk about it? I can be a reasonable guy, hahaha.”

And if Blind calls tomorrow, would you come? Or would you want a firm meeting before deciding?

“I always maintained, that playing for your country is a true and huge honour. I don’t have any reason to view that differently now. That talk will come anyway. But I will never say no to Oranje. It’s too valuable for me.”

Van Persie played 101 caps for Holland. When a player reaches 100 games, he usually is presented with a beautiful scale. The KNVB decided to simply mail the thing out in October, using regular post, to Instanbul. No one at the KNVB took the trouble to visit him, take him out to dinner… Or invite him as guest to an Oranje game. Van Persie had himself and wife Bouchra photographed with the thing, sitting on his sofa, with a grin on his face. And what a contrast with the welcome he received at Old Trafford or in De Kuip last Thursday. He was subbed in the 75th minute and received a tremendous applause. In Manchester, he even got a standing ovation when he scored against Man United. “Those were goosebumps moments. Really, the warmth and respect in England. The moment I got off the plane in Manchester I felt it. It was great. We lived there quite a while and I feel good in England.”

VP 100 club

But the pics on Twitter of you with that KNVB scale? That was a subtle statement? We are not that good in Holland in honouring our top athletes.

“But I do feel the respect and acknowledgement from the Dutch fans. Of course, receiving this in a stadium, with fans in the stands is much more fun and valuable, but that chance might come one day. I am proud anyway.”

In Turkey, the adoration goes beyond what we believe to be normal. Have you gotten used to that?

“We really enjoy life here. The people, the city, life in general. We feel at home and the kids too. I think I’ve become a bit of a Turk myself. I love Tavla, a sort of Turkish backgammon game. Amazing game. And I bought a special table for it, hahaha. My Turkish team mates love it too. But I can win against them now, so they don’t enjoy it too much anymore.”

And do you feel safe here? A lot has happened recently, with even a political coup?

“True, and people do talk about this. We do feel connected to the nation and we try to follow the news. We talk to people about it. Bouchra is always busy helping asylum kids from Syria, with other players wives. A lot is going on in the world, not just here. It’s frightening at times. Sure. And we do see security as a big theme. We will take that into account when we take our next step.”

robin bouchra dinner

Do you feel safe here?

“Yes I do. The last months are quiet. Istanbul is not unstable but listen, we are privileged. 99% of the other people have bigger worries than we. I’m a well payed player, I live in a beautiful home in a secure compound. I don’t think we would be the first to complain about feeling unsafe.”

(Note JR: and just this morning the news broke of a bomb exploding at Istanbul train station 🙁 )

Life was different last August. You weren’t happy with coach Pereira, there was the coup, I’m sure you must have considered leaving?

“We discussed all options, yes. And there were opportunities to consider and good offers. And we weighed everything, the football, family, security, etc. In that stage, only Wesley was here in Istanbul, as a Dutchman. But within weeks, we saw Nigel de Jong at Gala, Jan Olde Riekerink was here of course. Van der Wiel came to Fener, then Hoek as keeper trainer at Gala. Dick came here with Cor and Mario and then Lens showed up to play here. Really incredible. It all happened so quick and fell into place.”

So if Advocaat wouldn’t have come, would you be playing elsewhere?

“Hard to say, but it was a big factor in my decision. And pretty soon it all clicked. And I started to feel good and settled. I think I was fortunate that it all went as it went.


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  1. Jan good to here about life in Istanbul and Turkish football but seroisly do you think he deserves a call up or has done anything to get the call up.

    Again let’s don’t go back to the debate of Huntelaar vs RVP. Schalke vs Fenerbahce.

    1. RVP has gained certain level of fitness back,dont know more about it…RVP has sacrificed himself ALOT for team under Bert at his prime age for NT…with out any ego,he has done it..i dont think any other dutch player would have sacrificed as RVP did.But when he played for NT at last time i cannt forget that inch perfect HEADER to our own post..As if it looked like he was the striker of turkey..
      Trust needs to be earned i think Blind doesnt trust RVP and and he sees managerial issues with that..
      A fit RVP is way better than Dost and Luuk..if he still has the speed for the striker at top level..

    2. Huntelaar v van Persie debate has become very easy since Huntelaar is out until January 😉

      Seems an easy decision anyway, based on this season..

      RvP scores every 126 minutes.
      Says he is willing to help Oranje if they want him

      Huntelaar scores every 233 minutes.
      Says he only wants to be with Oranje if he starts

      hmmm 🤔

      1. 126 minutes will triple up for RVP if he comes to Bundasliga.but I’m not saying he won’t score either.its the competitiveness of the league which favours RVP and scoring in a weak league doesn’t justify anything.

        1. Huntelaar would most like to clock the same minutes if he moves to Turkish league. On this note Galatasaray are hoping to move for him in Jan.if this happens,this will be the first time both rivals will be playing in the same competition. Maybe than it would more applicable to do the stats

          1. Don’t be foolish. Everyone knows the difference between the leagues, anyone can draw their own conclusions.

            but here we are comparing form – not the leagues

            And regardless, stats offer an infinite amount of value over either of our meaningless opinions

          2. I know you have said you don’t believe in stats (which is weird), is it because you can’t twist them to match your made up stories? 😉

          3. “but here we are comparing form – not the leagues”

            so you are comparing form based on goals scored per minute. is it?????

            lets apply this to Janssen. eredivisie 27 goals. tottenham -0 goals (elcxuding penalty)
            does this mean he is out of form.

            this is why I dont believe in stats.

          4. samuel Eto(35)has scored 22 goals in 32 apperance for Antalyaspor in turkish league. he also is one behind RVP for current season what do have to say about his form.

            it ridicous by all means to compare form jus by looking at the number of goals scored per minute and not considering where they are playing.

          5. I guess you have a reading problem, same as your writing problem.

            Everyone has their own opinion on the differences between the leagues. Form is subjective, we know, this is always the case comparing players.
            We can each make our own mind up.

            I simply provided the info for you.
            I did not even give my opinion! Haha

          6. Wouldn’t you say that debating players is always a bit “ridicous”?

            Hunter and RvP were much differently style of player anyway.. so it always comes down to ones own opinion in the end anyway, no?

          7. “Everyone has their own opinion on the differences between the leagues. Form is subjective, we know, this is always the case comparing players.
            We can each make our own mind up.” What crap this this?

            All of a sudden RVP thinks He wants to help NT so he should be selected.based on what. Your stats. Don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

          8. Sorry, I can explain it for you but I cannot understand it for you.

            I do not say he should be selected!

            And they are not ‘my’ stats, I’m only sharing these actual records with you.

  2. Bazoer to Wolfsburg,did anyone saw this one coming.

    Massive hint from Van Dijk that he wants to reunite with Koeman. Will be quiet a addition to the squad.

    1. Van dijk is brilliant that he wants to join Koeman over some other coaches..Excellent choice from van dijk..
      Bazoer will have Bruma in wolfsburg..i am its just matter of time for Bazoer to be top class in his spot…

  3. Ouch.. tough day for AZ, after such a great week.
    Blown out at home 0-4 by Feyenoord, AZ’s focus was clearly on the Europa league while Feyenoords’ was definitely not!
    Feyenoord even miss 4 big chances, outshooting them with shots on target at 13-1zz
    but also very unfortunate to see Haps go off injured, but not having the best match anyway.

    Feyenoord enjoying their players back from injury, with Berghuis (1 goal) and Elia (1 assist, most chances created) inspiring Jorgensen (goal and 2 assists) with Toornstra and Vilhena (also scored) back together in the middle.
    Vilhena really looked great again to me.
    Good to see Kongolo back on the bench too..

    Pressure now on Ajax away to Twente today to stay tied at the top of the table with Feyenoord, before they host PSV next weekend for the last matches before the winter break.
    Feyenoord to host Vitesse.

  4. Kind of cool news: Justin Kluivert, (17-year-old son of legendary Ajax striker Patrick, in case you did not know) will be on the bench for Ajax today – it it because of lots of injuries on the wingers, but nonetheless gives a good feeling to see Kluivert on an Ajax shirt again 🙂

  5. Watched Southampton at Middlesborough.
    Good midfield battle with de Roon and Clasie.
    Nice little play by Clasie with Southampton leading to an nice goal over Middlesborough..
    Playing deep next to Romeu, baits de Roon out at then puts the ball in the space he should be in, worked through to WardProwse and a nice finish by Boufal.
    de Roon should learn from that, but really his midfield partners are not great and should make sure he doesn’t need to get pulled out. He reads the game well but can work on his ball control and passing a bit, the EPL should help with that.
    van Dijk as strong as always getting his CS.
    Southampton win 1-0

    1. Again no Blind,no Fosu mensah in MAnu 11…yes nowadays Blind is more sitting in bench and that will continue.Not coz Blind is bad player,they have better defenders at their expose..

      1. has what to do with Sou-Mid?

        Maybe good, hopefully some reason for those 2 get off the sinking ship of MU..

        Also I disagree with you, for me Blind is easily better than any of Jones, Rojo or Darmian.
        But Blind not really Mourinho’s style.. so not surprising to me if he is not the guaranteed starter, which it seems like we all sort of expected.
        But I think he will still play lots, even if not the current first choice.

  6. Ooohhh Twente win 1-0
    Disaster for Ajax.
    Viergever (who has actually been so solid lately) goes off for a red card on the 90th min for grabbing the ball, would have been a goal regardless probably but the penalty made sure.
    Ajax dominated possession but failed to create any really good chances, and did not look potent at all.. No urgency until way too late.
    Twente did not seem great, but kept to their plan, staying compact keeping Ajax pass it around outside and then took their late chance – a common tactic that gets good results against mediocre or complacent possession-based teams.
    Ziyech was pretty good, but no big chances really.
    Strange to me that Bosz’ only sub was taking Dolberg off.. maybe their brightest player first half of this season.
    Maybe if Viergever misses out next week then Riedewald gets to play at least..
    No chances for van de Beek or Nouri, maybe understandable not to do with rookies in a clutch moments, but they do offer forward momentum and creativity and a noticeable improvement in midfield movement. Something they were missing..
    Next week Ajax v PSV should be good!

  7. RVP VS Hunter…
    Both are strikers with different qualities..Hunter is pure poacher.But Robin was architect and can do anything with ball.
    Freekick,penalty,headers,acrobatic goals last but most important that he sacrifice for the team and his hold up play is sensational and superb unselfish player..RVP is proven winner at tough league in planet earth.if there was no injury it would be now RVP VS RobenVS MEssi VS CR7…thats how the level is…
    Anyways he has lost his pace,stamina so as of now i would go with Janssen-Zivkovic- and Luuk as Strikers…

  8. wilson inspired me to check up on all of the top dutch strikers scoring records for this season so far..
    I usually wait until the winter break to look at these for myself, but was too curious..

    I stopped at 10 players.
    Let me know if you’d like me to add anyone (I feel like I must be missing someone!)..

    Ranked by goals, per minute:
    – van Persie
    – Zivkovic
    – Dost
    – van Wolfswinkel
    – Weghorst
    – Kramer
    – Huntelaar
    – Janssen
    – Luuk de Jong
    – Achahbar

    Ranked by goals + assists combined, per match played:
    – Zivkovic
    – van Wolfswinkel
    – van Persie
    – Dost
    – Luuk de Jong
    – Weghorst
    – Huntelaar
    – Kramer
    – Janssen
    – Achahbar

    1. *lets add a disclaimer, so no one (wilson) gets confused:
      This compilation of statistics does not mean that any players are better than others or not – merely opinionless data which can give you an idea of a players form at the club where they are playing – anyone can make up their own minds about who they prefer and what this information means to them.
      please consider: each player has different styles, they were mostly trained at different places, they are different ages, playing on different teams in different competitions which have different players on them, (amongst other things) etc..

    2. Sorry, I failed to enter the values!

      Ranked by minutes per goal:
      126 – van Persie
      150 – Zivkovic
      154 – Dost
      160 – van Wolfswinkel
      162 – Weghorst
      172 – Kramer
      233 – Huntelaar
      331 – Janssen
      396 – Luuk de Jong
      976 – Achahbar

      Ranked by goals + assists combined, per match played average:
      .71 – Zivkovic
      .67 – van Wolfswinkel
      .60 – van Persie
      .59 – Dost
      .50 – Luuk de Jong
      .46 – Weghorst
      .44 – Huntelaar
      .29 – Kramer
      .25 – Janssen
      .25 – Achahbar

          1. @sybe its logical that he thinks he is crap thats why he is not in team,untill this moment…Danny Blind doesnt have a Nestelrooy-kluivert-RVP in his sqaud…he has some just overrated players and a Janssen why not Zivkovic…

          2. Ah, so do you think that if Danny Blind doesn’t select a player then it means he thinks the player is crap?

  9. Not sure what the point of debating RVP vs. Huntelaar is. Huntelaar doesn’t get selected either. Glad to here RVP is happy and in good form. I would select him over Bas “plan B” Dost.

    1. I think it’s just fun to debate players 🙂

      Do you prefer Luuk de Jong over Dost?
      only curious what others’ like..

      I think I might prefer reselecting an ‘in form’ RvP over Luuk de Jong in his current form.
      Not sure about Dost myself.. puts lots of goals in at club level but hasn’t made much effect in the NT.

      Blind usually takes 3 strikers, I guess.

      but alas, and there is no game for Blind to make any selections for until late-March anyway hehe
      So, only fun to make our own choices…

      1. That’s a tough one. Dost does have a better goal scoring record but for the national team he’s been nothing more than Fellaini playing striker. I think Luuk is a smarter player and fits in with the team better, perhaps because he has chemistry with a few of the players? I would probably select Luuk for now but I am definitely not a huge fan of either player.

        Definitely wouldn’t mind seeing Zivkovic but I suppose he might not be ready yet. For now:

        Van Persie
        De Jong

          1. Is that a TIJU guarantee? Haha if he will get us goals then he’s ready obviously. He does have 4 goals and 2 assists in 14 Eredivise games vs. 4 goals and 5 assists in 16 games for Luuk. I would not mind at all if he was called up for the next set of fixtures. They are a long ways away though as mentioned previously so lets see what happens with form/injuries in the coming months.

            For me striker LB and GK are the most interesting positions to watch going forward. Janssen seemed to have the position locked down but it’s hard to see him getting too much playing time with the Spurs.

            GK – Zoet? after a hot start Steks has only been average for Everton
            RB – Karsdorp
            CB – De Vrij and Van Dijk – easy
            LB – Kongolo probably deserves a shot
            MID – Strootman, Gini, Sneijder – easy
            Wing – Promes and Robben – how is Promes on the left? my only concern
            ST – Janssen for now but the door is open

          2. what about Locadia. I think he is also a good striker, its unfortunate he has always being second best to Luuk but individually he is more mobile than luuk. his workrate is good, drops back during defense and can hold the ball effectively. Luuk is more a team player compared to Locadia who has held his own after being shifted to the wing by cocu at PSV.

            injuries has really restricted his involvement in NT but hopefully once he is back in form and playing for PSV,he will be able to make the cut.



            *Van Ginkel——strootman—-Ake———Toornstra

            Pieters——–Van Dijk———De Vrij



          3. Ah yes, good call – I always forget about Locadia for the striker spot..
            maybe since he played mostly LW last season.

            Anyway, no goals yet this season before he got injured… I’d have also included Castaignos in that list earlier, no goals yet for him either. 🙁

  10. Well, as long as we are just talking…

    Not excited about Luuk Dej or Dost, either. If for some reason, Janssen wasn’t able to go, I think they’d be better off playing Robben and Promes as twin strikers. Give Wijnaldum free space behind them, and maybe play Elia as a wide player; have no idea what would happen, but at least you’d have some speed and skill and movement out there. (Still leaves room for two solid holding mids—which they would def. need 😉

    1. Two strikers one winger and an attacking mid? No that is a formation I haven’t seen before. Points for tactical innovation and asymmetry though haha. I agree with you it’s hard to get excited about Dost or De Jong leading the line at the moment.

      Glad you mentioned Elia, in the few times I’ve watched him this year he looked dangerous. Probably our #3 winger right now for me.

      1. Lol, dwherwey, as I said, as long as we’re just talking…I’m thinking along the lines of the set up of the ’98 team. Two stikers. Overmars was the pure winger and given license to switch sides looking for space…and while R DeBoer was nominally the other winger, he actually went anywhere behind the strikers (and sometimes right up with them) he found opportunity, and he provided linkage between the mf’s (Davids and Jonk, who stayed a little further back) and the forwards.

        Of course, I know, I know, there is a difference in talent. But these present guys have speed and skill, and it may encourage a little more thinking and creativity.

        @Sybe, yep, I was actually thinking Classie and Strootman for the mf pairing. Not sure who else would fit.

    2. Speaking of 2 holding mids.. why not try Strootman and Clasie?
      Both are playing slightly more advanced at the moment, but both have played lots of DM..
      Strootman currently plays on the left of de Rossi at Roma, and Clasie currently plays to the right of Romeu at Southampton.. why not try it at least?
      I don’t think they’ve played much together, maybe it would have been before Strootman was injured, so 2014 or earlier…

  11. Hi guys, took some time off to see the games without seeing results on here :-).

    Some comments:

    RVP – Huntelaar

    Two different players. I don’t see the comparison too well. RVP can play on 4 different spots in the team and Hunter is just a centre striker.

    RVP creates a lot, Hunter less so. Their levels of fitness can be different, and form, and Hunter has proven not to deal with the bench too well.

    Zivkovic – Blind

    Tiju’s comments are baseless as per usual. Zivkovic dug a huge hole for himself when at Ajax 2 and at Willem II. He simply is a silly, arrogant, uncoachable guy, with finishing issues. No tactical discipline either.

    Typically a player as we know from the past: super fast and basically relying on this speed (in youth competitions) to become the most valuable player.

    When he moved up (Ajax) he was difficult to deal with. We’ve seen it many times in the past, with Promes, Quincy and Elia as prime examples.

    Ten Hag is great with difficult players. He got Promes playing again and is now doing the same with Zivko. His finishing is improving (missed a sitter last weekend again, by the way) and if he has 1 consistent season at Dutch top level, Blind might give him a go.

    AZ – Feyenoord

    Feyenoord needed a big statement after the abysmal performance vs Fener. AZ has been celebrating. Gio did the right thing benching Kuyt. Toornstra has the dynamics needed to kill off a tired team. Jorgensen should have scored 4. Elia should have scored 2. Could have been 0-10 easily.

    1. @Jan this is hilarious …SOCALLED TACTICAL intelligent man Blind failed to qualify for EC2016..with a 3 spot….with strikers such as Hunetr,RVP,Dost,i cannt blame Luuk as he didnt play much….So what are you telling about a guy who scores tons of goal now?…shows certain dribbling skills and usainbolt speed which others can only dream of…
      Do you have any idea such a pacy striker faces guys like Ramos(decent pace) or Godin…??with a Snijder pass or clasie pass Zivkovic would burry the oppoent team..Cannt you see that???
      Blind id BLIND

      1. Tiju, don’t get your panty in a knot. I didn’t say Zivkovic will never able to do it. But he’s only been playing well for a mid-tier Eredvisie team for 4 months or so.

        The 4 years before that he was a knob.

        Don’t you think the NT manager needs to take this into account???

        We have had MANY players who had a great run for months, scoring goals or giving assists and then disappearing.

        Do you believe the NT manager should throw away the players who he knows and is loyal to and use the NT as a place where every two months new players are used??

        1. I am not getting my panty in a knot…But the Blind is making me really pissed of…Loyalty is good thing which cannt be sacrificed for good talents…SO far what has he achieved with So called loyal ones????????
          My point is Zivkovic has something which current loyal forwards of Blind cannt give…Goals are bye product,if play in agood team and unders good coach ,then goals will come even if u r average talent..Zivkovic has got real pace that would be a menace for world class defenders…THAT MUST be utilised..that MUST BE UNLEASHED..
          I am not asking Blind to throw every loyal ones..I am asking Dont Close the door for Bazoer for Klassen
          Zivkovic for Depay and Dost
          Mensah For veltman and etc

          1. I am asking Dont Close the door for Bazoer for Klassen
            Zivkovic for Depay and Dost
            Mensah For veltman and etc

            “don’t close the door”

            and you mentioned those players in one sentence. Few are whom you praised a lot, and others whom you routinely smacked.


  12. Tom Boerer of FC OSS is taking eerste divisive by storm with 20 goals already even before the season reaching the half way mark.well almost there.

    AZ scooped Janssen from almere city where he scored 19 goals for the whole season.

    Let’s hope he also goes on to become top prospect. I’m sure many eredivisie teams will be tracking him.especially those in mid table.

        1. Bazoer is runner box to box can defend if he wants,good tackles,good vision,excellent ball control for a world class player which Ake dont have..he lacks little concentration in game sat times..
          i would not mind a dutch team of
          As first choice
          ———De roon/Clasie——-
          instead of some klassen and co…

          1. like
            on Second line
            stand bye

  13. I am asking Dont Close the door for Bazoer for Klassen
    Zivkovic for Depay and Dost
    Mensah For veltman and etc

    “don’t close the door”

    and you mentioned those players in one sentence. Few are whom you praised a lot, and others whom you routinely smacked.

    Answer is simple the players i support are beter talents were we could benefit…others just flopped,flopping and will continue to flop..

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