Ricardo Pepi came off the bench to play a few minutes, while Taylor Booth had to leave the same game before halftime as PSV Eindhoven started the new Dutch Eredivisie season with a win over FC Utrecht.
PSV Eindhoven 2 – 0 Utrecht
It could have been a battle of the Yanks on Saturday afternoon in this Eredivisie season opener but PSV’s two new Americans saw very little playing time against their Utrecht compatriot.
Ricardo Pepi came off the bench for seven minutes and probably didn’t break a sweat for the hosts, while Malik Tillman definitely didn’t since he never got onto the field. For Utrecht however, Taylor Booth got the nod but he came off in the 41st minute due to an injury.
The Farmers’ goals came on both sides of the intermission with newcomer Noa Lang scoring just before the whistle and Yorbe Vertessen netting just before the 80th minute mark.
For the first goal, Ibrahim Sangaré picked out Lang, who just arrived from Belgium’s Club Brugge in the summer and the Dutchman shot left-footed from the left side of the box and put it inside the top left corner. All that was left to do was for Vasilis Barkas to pick the ball out of the back of his net.
Utrecht were out-classed by their hosts where they only managed five shots with just one on target, compared to Eindhoven’s 19 attempts with almost half hitting the target.
Vertessen put the game to bed late in the second half with a shot that his father would be proud of. The young Belgian found himself in the center of the box with the ball and drilled it right into the center of the net.
Tuesday evening PSV will head south to Austria to take on Strum Graz as they look to make it into the Champions League group stages. The trip should only be a formality and one where Pepi should see playing time with the Dutch side up 4-1 after the first leg, although Tillman will miss out due to UEFA technicalities with player registration. They will then return to league action and head to Arnhem over the weekend to take on Vitesse.
As for Utrecht, they’ll host Herenveen in a Sunday lunchtime kick-off at Galgenwaard Stadium with Booth hopefully back on the field.
Djordje Mihailović came off the bench for AZ Alkmaar in the 89th minute. His side crushed Go Ahead Eagles by a 5-1 score. The American will hope to get some more playing time when the Cheese Farmers host Santa Coloma from Andorra as they look to earn a spot in the Europa Conference League. They’ll return to league action on Sunday and travel to Waalwijk.
Anthony Fontana didn’t make the bench for PEC Zwolle in their 2-1 home loss to Sparta Rotterdam. Summer arrival Agustín Anello was on the bench for Sparta, but the Florida native was not called into acdtion.
Neither Kik Pierie nor Philippe Sandler were in uniform for their respective teams on Sunday, as Excelsior Rotterdam pulled out 4-3 road win over NEC.
In Eerste Divisie action, Gedion Zelalem went the distance for Den Bosch, as they narrowly beat TOP Oss by a goal to none. Next up will be a trip to take on Helmond Sport.
Malik Tillman made his debut in the PSV uniform, albeit for their second team Jong PSV, in Monday-night Eerste Divisie action. The American started in the central midfield and played the first half before being subbed out, as the team eventually secured a 1-0 home win over Telstar. Tillman will not join PSV’s first team as they travel to Graz to wrap up their Champions League tie on Tuesday, but should be available four days later when they visit Vitesse in Eredivisie action.
John Hilton scored for Dordrecht on his debut but all the team could manage was a solitary point against NAC Breda with the game ending 2-2. They’ll go looking for their first win of the season when they go up against Willem II on Friday night.
Arizona-born, former USA U-17 defender Rickson van Hees played the full 90 minutes at right back for his new team Jong Utrecht on Monday night, as they narrowly lost to Jong AZ by a 1-0 margin. Joshua Pynadath, who is still listed on the Jong AZ books, continued to be out of their lineup.