Hard kicks by Yassin Ayoub and Nacer Barazite ensure three points for FC Utrecht against Excelsior (2-1).
FC Utrecht have added three points to their aggregate by beating Excelsior on their own pitch this afternoon. It was a spectacle from start to finish and the goals were left until after the break: 2-1.
Eying for a chance is what he did. Watching, measuring, targeting. And then shoot. Nacer Barazite fired the ball from approximately 25 metres into the far corner just ten minutes after halftime. A clean shot. Quite up to speed, well aimed, just outside Excelsior keeper Tom Muyters’ reach. With his shot Barazite brought the score to 2-0 and stiff hugs were given to Sébastien Haller when the goal was celebrated. Because he was the one who had pushed aside Excelsior’s right back Khalid Karami with massive force. ‘That will teach you, boy.’ And after that the Frenchman showed excellence; he passed the ball to Barazite who then scored.
Right after the very start of the second half, it was bull’s-eye. And also then it was a shot from distance that hit the net. The scorer? Yassin Ayoub. He received the ball from Barazite, dribbled it into the box and netted the ball via the inside of the post: 1-0. It was a beauty.
It was an important goal. Because FC Utrecht could do well with a goal against the players from Kralingen. During the first half the Utrecht team regularly aimed for the Excelsior door, but did not manage to find any cracks in the Rotterdam defence. Giovanni Troupée forced Muyters to exert himself fully, Haller headed over, Sofyan Amrabat rifled the ball rock-hard against the post and a Zivkovic header was a prey for Muyters.
After the break Excelsior obtained help from the woodwork once more, when Haller shot the ball hard against the post on the turn. In two instances the keeper was beaten and was not helped by the post or the cross-bar. At the other end of the pitch it was quieter, but Excelsior nevertheless managed to create an exciting final stage. Seven minutes before the end Stanley Elbers scored 2-1, but that did not upset FC Utrecht. The players from Utrecht failed to increase the margin to two goals by among others Zivkovic and substitute Andreas Ludwig, but managed to win three points. And that was the whole idea for trainer/coach Erik ten Hag’s team. Mission accomplished.
And now: RKC Waalwijk, FC Twente and Feyenoord
There are no Eredivisie matches in the coming weekend because of international matches. On Thursday FC Utrecht play against RKC Waalwijk in a friendly game. The match is played at Sportcomplex Zoudenbalch and starts at 12.30 hrs. Admission is free of charge. The next match for FC Utrecht is an away match against FC Twente. The next home match is on 27 November when Feyenoord is the opponent.
FC Utrecht - Excelsior 2-1 (0-0)
47. Yassin Ayoub 1-0
54. Nacer Barazite 2-0
83. Stanley Elbers 2-1
Yellow cards: Jeffry Fortes en Ryan Koolwijk (both Excelsior).
Referee: Richard Liesveld.
Line-up FC Utrecht:
Robbin Ruiter; Giovanni Troupée (73. Mark van der Maarel), Ramon Leeuwin, Willem Janssen, Robin van der Meer (82. Kevin Conboy); Rico Strieder, Sofyan Amrabat, Yassin Ayoub, Nacer Barazite (87. Andreas Ludwig); Richairo Zivkovic, Sébastien Haller.
Tom Muyters; Khalid Karami, Henrico Drost, Jurgen Mattheij, Leeroy Owusu (82. Stanley Elbers); Jeffry Fortes, Ryan Koolwijk, Hicham Faik (70. Kevin Vermeulen); Danilo Pantic (53. Nigel Hasselbaink), Mike van Duinen, Fredy Ribeiro.