On character!

20 november 2016

FC Utrecht, playing with ten men for more than 80 minutes, took home a point from the Grolsch Veste. The match against FC Twente ended 1-1.

FC Utrecht took home a point against FC Twente. Utrecht played with ten men for more than 80 minutes. Trainer/coach Erik ten Hag’s team fought like lions, and not without success: 1-1.

Playing with a man down after nine minutes in a full Grolsch Veste against FC Twente, you can do one of two things. Hang you head and resign yourself to an uphill struggle, or roll up your sleeves, straighten your back and fight like lions.

In fighting mode
FC Utrecht did the latter in Enschede. Ten Hag’s team were down to ten men in the ninth minute following a debatable red card for Ramon Leeuwin, but were determined to return home with a result. It pressed, headed, flew, fell and, above all, stood up and got back to work. Utrecht went into fighting mode against an excellent Twente and pulled a point out of the fire.

Zivkovic silences the Grolsch Veste
The goal came when keeper Nick Marsman failed to hold on to a Yassin Ayoub shot midway through the first half. Richairo Zivkovic pounced on the rebound to score the equaliser, cancelling out Hidde ter Avest’s opening goal from a sweet lob.

Resilience, fighting spirit and determination
Good, while the 1-1 was being celebrated there were still 70 minutes to go. FC Twente are strong at home, with three strikers on loan from Manchester City who would be first choice at any Eredivisie stadium. But not today. Today’s post-match talk was about Utrecht’s fighting spirit, resilience and determination.

Man of the Match? The whole team!
Every Utrecht player could have been Man of the Match. Robbin Ruiter, with his fantastic savers, such reflexes! Giovanni Troupée, who never stopped running in the heart of defence with Willem Janssen.

All played a part
The right back for the day, Sofyan Amrabat, never gave up. Left back Robin van der Meer was a rock in defence. The German diesel Rico Strieder, the hard working Yassin Ayoub, Nacer Barazite gave everything for the team. The strikers, Sébastien Haller and Zivkovic, often took three, four, five or even more opponents out of the game.

The substitutes, Andreas Ludwig, Mark van der Maarel and Patrick Joosten, also played a full part. And last but not least, Ramon Leeuwin, who rightly or wrongly received a red card took it for what it was and left the field without protesting. Many players could learn a lesson from him.

Sunday at home against Feyenoord
Ten-man Utrecht played for 20 in Enschede. Ten Hag’s men face their next challenge on Sunday when Feyenoord visit the Galgenwaard stadium.

FC Twente - FC Utrecht 1-1 (1-1)
22. Hidde ter Avest 1-0
26. Richairo Zivkovic 1-1

Yellow cards: Robbin Ruiter, Mark van der Maarel and Giovanni Troupée (all FC Utrecht).

Red card: 9. Ramon Leeuwin (FC Utrecht).

Attendance: 25,100.

Referee: Allard Lindhout.

FC Twente line-up:
Nick Marsman; Hidde ter Avest, Peet Bijen, Stefan Thesker, Jeroen van der Lely (82. Jari Oosterwijk); Mateusz Klich, Kamohelo Mokotjo, Bersant Celina; Chinedu Ede (46. Dylan Seys), Enes Ünal, Yaw Yeboah.

FC Utrecht line-up:
Robbin Ruiter; Giovanni Troupée, Ramon Leeuwin, Willem Janssen, Robin van der Meer; Rico Strieder (90+6. Patrick Joosten), Sofyan Amrabat, Yassin Ayoub (90. Andreas Ludwig), Nacer Barazite (75. Mark van der Maarel); Richairo Zivkovic, Sébastien Haller.


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