Goals from captain Willem Janssen and substitute Kristoffer Peterson provide for the 1-2 away win against Sparta Rotterdam.
FC Utrecht took three points in their first Eredivisie game in 2017. Goals from Willem Janssen and Kristoffer Peterson made the 1-0 backlog disappear after halftime and turned into a deserved 1-2 win on Sparta Rotterdam.
How to break through a wall? Kristoffer Peterson showed how on the cold Saturday evening in Spangen. He went straight through. Almost literally. Because three minutes before the final whistle, not even 15 minutes on the pitch, the Swede zigzagged between two Spartans and cold-bloodedly passed goalkeeper Roy Kortsmit. The score before this brilliant move? 1-1. And after? Right: 1-2 for FC Utrecht!
The joy was immense for the Swede, his teammates, and the 650 supporters in the away section. Also because it was a goal FC Utrecht had to work hard for against tough Sparta Rotterdam.
Because even though the Spartans played at home, they sank far back, built a solid castle wall and fired the ball – in a figurative sense of course – now and then high and hard over it. With the intention that the strikers popped up like a jack-in-the-box before the Utrecht goal and preferably scored. And that is what happened in the first half. Spaniard Iván Calero Ruiz shot the ball into the goal and provided Alex Pastoor’s team a 1-0 lead.
FC Utrecht had to work hard after that goal. They had to look for cracks in the wall, find a weak spot. Sofyan Amrabat was the first to find one, with a goal as final result. Sherel Floranus pulled the break on the emerging Amrabat; the Spartan was given a yellow card, FC Utrecht a free kick. The second half had just begun and Yassin Ayoub took the free kick. He put the ball down at the far post for Willem Janssen, who headed the 1-1 into the net.
After the equaliser the Utrecht squad, encouraged by the travelling 650 supporters, went for more. A second goal, three points if possible. And right at that moment when many thought that goal would not come anymore, Peterson bewitched his direct opponents, went through the wall and: 1-2.
Next game: Ajax at home
Trainer/coach Erik ten Hag’s team are now working toward the first home game of 2017. Sunday 22 January Ajax will visit Stadium Galgenwaard. Tickets for this great game are going fast, but there are still some available!
Sparta Rotterdam - FC Utrecht 1-2 (1-0)
26. Iván Calero Ruiz 1-0
52. Willem Janssen 1-1
88. Kristoffer Peterson 1-2
Yellow cards: Sherel Floranus (Sparta Rotterdam), Ramon Leeuwin and Yassin Ayoub (both FC Utrecht).
Referee: Serdar Gözübüyük.
Line-up Sparta Rotterdam:
Roy Kortsmit; Denzel Dumfries, Rick van Drongelen, Michel Breuer, Sherel Floranus (74. Bart Vriends); Ryan Sanusi (78. David Mendes Da Silva), Mart Dijkstra, Stijn Spierings; Thomas Verhaar, Zakaria El Azzouzi, Iván Calero Ruiz (84. Craig Goodwin).
Line-up FC Utrecht:
David Jensen; Mark van der Maarel, Ramon Leeuwin, Willem Janssen, Robin van der Meer; Wout Brama, Sofyan Amrabat, Yassin Ayoub, Nacer Barazite (90+2. Andreas Ludwig); Richairo Zivkovic (74. Kristoffer Peterson), Sébastien Haller.