Eight goals, eight yellow cards, one red card, VAR-moments and some kerfuffles. “Too much to mention it all”, says new coach Ruud van Nistelrooij after PSV beat arch rival Ajax 5-3 in Amsterdam on Saturday. His first official match as PSV coach became his first big victory . “I had a field day, and us adding a trophy to the club’s history makes me even more proud”.
Written by Luuk van Grinsven
Though many may not regard the Johan Cruijff Shield as the big prize, PSV and Ajax proved them wrong on Saturday. In a match where the teams were fighting with determination and passion, the Eindhoven team came out victorious. “It was bizarre; so much happened. It needs to sink in”, Van Nistelrooij said at the press conference after the match.
PSV came out with a final score of 3-5. New player Guus Til was the undisputed man of the match. De new mid-fielder’s three goals were crucial. Two of those goals were headers. “Luuk took the two central defenders to the first post, which put me in a one to one duek with a back player. That was a factor, I think”, Til explains.
“Scoring five goals here feels super.”
In the opening phase Ajax did not make PSV’s life easy. Yet Van Nistelrooij is convinced that his team was a match for the Amsterdam team: “In the first ten minutes we were the better team. We were on their half sooner than they were on ours. By sticking to our strategy of playing over the left flank, we found the free players from there”, thee 46-year old coach evaluates.
PSV ‘s time to enjoy this victory is only brief. On Tuesday evening their programme is the away duel against Monaco, in the preliminary rounds of the Champions League.
Has this victory given PSV a boost? “You can imagine what this means for a team. Not a single face that wasn’t smiling in the dressing rooms, Van Nistelrooij laughs. “A five-goal victory in this stadium gives us tremendous joy.”
Translated by: Greta