Ricardo Pepi and Malik Tillman were consigned to PSV Eindhoven’s bench ahead of their critical Chammpions League visit to Glasgow, however Djordje Mihailovic made an impact during his second-half appearance for AZ.
Vitesse 1 – 3 PSV Eindhoven
Neither Ricardo Pepi nor Malik Tillman made it off of the PSV Eindhoven bench on Saturday, as they overcame an early Vitesse goal to take all three points in a 3-1 road victory.
PSV are back in action on Tuesday night, when they visit Rangers in the first leg of their final playoff round of Champions League qualification.
Pepi will make the trip to Scotland and will look to build upon his goalscoring performance in last week’s qualifying win over Sturm Graz, however it is not yet confirmed whether Tillman has been registered for this round following his recent arrival on loan from FC Bayern.
RKC Waalwijk 1 – 3 AZ Alkmaar
Djordje Mihailovic saw second-half substitute minutes for AZ Alkmaar on Sunday, contributing on their final goal as a commanding win on the road over RC Waalwijk saw them top the Eredivisie table two games into the season.
Mihailovic began the game on the bench, and saw all of the scoring action from the pine before taking the field with 16 minutes left in regulation.
RKC’s Michiel Kramer put the hosts ahead after 41 minutes, firing from the spot after AZ midfielder Dani de Wit clearly got his outstretched hand on the ball in the area.
AZ coach Pascal Jansen made a pair of adjustments at the half, bringing on Ernest Poku and Mayckel Lahdo for Ruben van Bommel and Jens Odgaard, and saw the returns on his investments almost immediately.
Poku set up Evangelos Pavlidis for the equalizer in the 54th minute thanks to a defensive error, then de Wit made up for his earlier mistake with an off-balance, close-range strike just before the hour to put AZ ahead.
Mihailovic’s short and tidy cameo saw the American make 12 total touches, complete all 11 of his passing attempts, a pair from the deep, while winning his only tackle and duel against the opposition.
The Poku-Pavlidis connection then struck again with 11 minutes left on the clock, with a bit of help from the American; Mihailovic sprung Poku up the left with a pass that skirted along the sideline, and the Dutch youth prospect cut inwards before setting Pavlidis up for a clear seven-yarder to seal the final 3-1 win.
AZ’s next league game is not until September 3rd when they visit Vitesse, however they have plenty on their plates in the meantime as they will play a two-legged play-off against Norwegians Brann in the final step to reach the Europa Conference League group stage. The first leg is in Alkmaar on Thursday night.
Helmond Sport 1 – 0 FC Den Bosch
Gedion Zelalem and Den Bosch had a disappointing outing on their visit to Helmond Sport on Friday night, staying within shooting distance against their hosts but losing by the narrowest of margins thanks to a first-half goal.
The Berlin-born midfielder held down the fort in the heart of his team’s midfield, putting in one of the stronger performances of his teammates before departing in the 85th minute as head coach Tomasz Kaczmarek threw everything at the opponents in search of an equalizer.
During his time on the field, he completed 83% of his 65 passes, fired seven of his 11 long-ball attempts on-target, won both of his tackles, made one clearance, two interceptions, 11 recoveries, and won six of 17 duels. One of his three fouls committed did, however, lead to his first yellow card of the season.
The only goal of the game came in the 27th minute, when Joseph Amuzu fired in a long cross from the flank which Giannis-Fivos Botos put away for the winner.
Now with three points from their first two games, Zelalem and his teammates are near the middle of the pack in the Eerste Divisie, and return to action on Friday when Justin Che and ADO Den Haag pay a visit.
Willem II 2 – 0 FC Dordrecht
John Hilton earned another start for Dordrecht on Friday, going the distance on the left side of the defense in their road loss at Willem II.
A goal on either side of the half for the hosts was enough to take the points; Michael de Leeuw headed in a cross from Niels van Berkel in the 32nd minute for the 1-0 lead, then Max Svensson doubled the lead in the 49th thanks to another cross from the defender.
For his part, Hilton did set up a pair of chances for the visitors, accurately hit five out of his 12 long balls and crosses, won both of his attempted tackles and five out of seven duels while drawing a pair of fouls.
With one point from their first two games, Dordrecht are in 16th place in the 20-team league, however with the Eerste Divisie adopting a MLS-inspired no-relegation system for the next few years, they can continue stumbling along without any major danger.
Agustin Anello played the final 35 minutes for Sparta Rotterdam on Sunday as they blew a two-goal lead at home against Feyenoord, and were forced to settle for a 2-2 draw.
Taylor Booth is recovering from an injury and did not suit up for FC Utrecht on Sunday afternoon. The team fell by a 2-0 scoreline at home against Heerenveen.
Philippe Sandler is injured for NEC Nijmegen and missed their 2-1 road loss at Heracles.
Kik Pierie is out for some time with a foot injury, and did not take part in Excelsior Rotterdam’s remarkable 2-2 home draw against powerhouse Ajax.
Anthony Fontana was nowhere to be found for promoted Zwolle’s 3-1 road loss at FC Twente.
Josh Pynadath did not suit up for Jong AZ’s 2-1 road loss at NAC Breda in the Eerste Divisie.
Justin Che, who just joined ADO Den Haag on loan for the season, did not suit up on Friday for their 3-0 home loss to Roda JC Kerkrade.
Former US U-17 defender Rickson van Hees will likely start at right back for Jong Utrecht on Monday night when they welcome FC Groningen.