An absolute thriller this afternoon (Sunday) in Stadium Galgenwaard. FC Utrecht played a 3-3 draw against ADO Den Haag in the Utrecht football temple.

And suddenly he showed up. Right in front of the goal. With the ball. While the fourth official put his sign up into the air that another four minutes remained, Elson Hooi used live ammunition. The rapid striker with shirt number 77 rifled the ball into the net, and that wrapped up the match is what many supporters thought. 2-3 for Ado Den Haag.

Trump card
But not everyone agreed to settle for the defeat. Not the Utrecht squad anyway, who rolled up their sleeves once more. In the first minute of the additional time Cyriel Dessers thought he had scored a goal, but it was disallowed because of an alleged foul against an ADO defender. To the dismay of FC Utrecht. But they continued their efforts! Two minutes later the Domstad players had a free-kick and it was Labyad who claimed the ball. The Moroccan international exhilarated the fans in the sunny Stadium Galgenwaard. The ball flew down into the far corner: 3-3.

All options open
FC Utrecht – ADO Den Haag was a match with all options open. The first option? In favour of the Utrechters. Sander van de Streek was the one who give his doubters the red card just before half time when he beat Indy Groothuizen who was doing a great job, with a measured shot: 1-0.

Players from The Hague hold their heads up high
But then the match turned around. The visitors from the Residence got a grip on FC Utrecht and ten minutes after half time striker Bjørn Johnsen took control over the Utrecht defence. The Norwegian American finished 1-1 and fifteen minutes later the world seemed to be standing on its head. From a corner Tom Beugelsdijk, the defender who scored from a corner in eight out of twelve previous Eredivisie goals, was very accurate. The strong heading defender took advantage of hardly being covered and headed the ball into goal.

And another turn in the match
ADO Den Haag had taken the lead for some five minutes, when trainer/coach Jean-Paul de Jong’s team eliminated the backlog again. Giovanni Troupée, who had just entered the pitch as a substitute, beautifully curled the ball in front of the goal and found Gyrano Kerk to head the ball into the top corner: 2-2!

Roadmap in the paper bin
When everyone in Stadium Galgenwaard thought that the match would end in a draw, Hooi threw all the plans out of the window. But also the road map ‘Ado Den Haag win in Utrecht’ soon ended up in the paper bin. Thanks to Labyad and his superb free kick.

Next week: Feyenoord away
In a week, on Sunday 15 April, FC Utrecht will play against Feyenoord in De Kuip. The match against the Rotterdammers will start at 14:30 and tickets for the match in South Holland are for sale. The next home match for FC Utrecht is on Thursday 19 April. On that evening the kick-off is at 18:30 and FC Groningen will be the visitors at Stadium Galgenwaard.

FC Utrecht - ADO Den Haag 3-3 (1-0)
43. Sander van de Streek 1-0
54. Bjørn Johnsen 1-1
69. Tom Beugelsdijk 1-2
73. Gyrano Kerk 2-2
90+1. Elson Hooi 2-3
90+4. Zakaria Labyad 3-3

Yellow cards: Gyrano Kerk (FC Utrecht), Elson Hooi (ADO Den Haag).

Attendance: 20,145

Referee: Dennis Higler.

Line-up FC Utrecht:
David Jensen; Sean Klaiber (70. Giovanni Troupée), Ramon Leeuwin, Willem Janssen, Mark van der Maarel; Rico Strieder, Mateusz Klich (65. Cyriel Dessers), Urby Emanuelson (79. Lukas Görtler), Sander van de Streek; Zakaria Labyad, Gyrano Kerk.

Line-up ADO Den Haag:
Indy Groothuizen; Trevor David, Tom Beugelsdijk, Wilfried Kanon, Aaron Meijers; Danny Bakker, Lex Immers, Abdenasser El Khayati; Thijmen Goppel (60. Melvyn Lorenzen), Bjørn Johnsen (88. Erik Falkenburg), Sheraldo Becker (25. Elson Hooi).