FC Utrecht draw PEC Zwolle 1-1.
FC Utrecht took home a point from the away match against PEC Zwolle. For nearly 90 minutes the score was 1-0, but the final say was to Sébastien Haller. The striker determined the final score 1-1 from the penalty spot.
They had to dig deep. Deep down from Giovannie Troupé’s football boots he managed to draw one more source. And that is what FC Utrecht’s right back did in the final minute of the regular playing time. He put on a spurt, carried through and was taken down. In the box.The foul was done by Calvin Verdonk, defender of PEC Zwolle. Referee Siemen Mulder saw it, awarded a penalty and showed Verdonk the red card.
What was the next step? One more job was left for Sébastien Haller. The ball was on the penalty spot, the Frenchman took a run-up. He remained perfectly calm, which he is renowned for. The Penalty Professor, as he should be called from now on. It was the twelfth time running that he cashed in on a penalty. This time it meant the 1-1 draw, which was also the final score. Because in the few minutes left the eleven Utrecht players tried to push against the ten players from Zwolle, but did not get a scoring opportunity.
Opportunities? They were scarce in Zwolle this Saturday night anyway. PEC Zwolle hardly got any, and FC Utrecht did not collect dozens either. Referee Mulder’s decision after more than 10 minutes football on the artificial pitch in Overijssel was all the more important. Mulder allowed PEC Zwolle to continue to play, whereas the FC Utrecht left back Conboy was down on the pitch with an injury. The Danish player evidently had a head-injury, but this was left unnoticed by the referee. PEC Zwolle were allowed to continue to play, which they did and scored. Kingsley Ehizibue made optimum use of the opportunity offered and netted the goal 1-0.
As soon as FC Utrecht had recovered from the setback, they started the hunt for the equaliser. That is not a process of all players running forward and shooting pot luck. That is done in a careful way. That means wait for the right position and then take appropriate action that suits the occasion and results in an opportunity. This resulted in moving the ball back and forth for a long time, but just before the end, when substitutes Sofyan Amrabat, Nacer Barazite and Patrick Joosten proved to be the sting in the tail, the equaliser is scored.
Next match: FC Utrecht – FC Groningen
When? Friday. Then FC Utrecht will play on their own pitch. The Eredivisie match against FC Groningen starts at 20.00 hrs. Trainer/coach Erik ten Hag’s team will undoubtedly be on the hunt for the first three points in the early season.
PEC Zwolle - FC Utrecht 1-1 (1-0)
12. Kingsley Ehizibue 1-0
90+1. Sébastien Haller (penalty) 1-1
Yellow cards: Kingsley Ehizibue, Wout Brama, Bram van Polen (allen PEC Zwolle), Willem Janssen en Menno Koch (both FC Utrecht).
Referee: Siemen Mulder.
Line-up PEC Zwolle:
Mickey van der Hart; Bram van Polen, Dirk Marcellis, Ted van de Pavert, Calvin Verdonk; Wout Brama, Gustavo Hebling, Anass Achahbar (90+2. Bart Schenkeveld); Kingsley Ehizibue (76. Wouter Marinus), Nicolai Brock-Madsen, Ryan Thomas (64. Youness Mokhtar).
Line-up FC Utrecht:
Robbin Ruiter; Giovanni Troupée, Menno Koch (85. Patrick Joosten), Ramon Leeuwin, Kevin Conboy; Rico Strieder, Willem Janssen (65. Nacer Barazite), Andreas Ludwig (65. Sofyan Amrabat), Yassin Ayoub; Sébastien Haller, Richairo Zivkovic.