PSV to Champions League preliminaries

AZ-PSV - Eredivisie
Photo credit: PSV Media

PSV won 2-1 against AZ last Sunday afternoon. In doing so, the Eindhoven club secured second place and the Champions League preliminaries. A turbulent season ends on a positive note and PSV may hope for quite a few extra millions this summer.

An hour into the game the most exciting moment was Ajax’ half-time score in Enschede. That said enough about the match between AZ and PSV in Alkmaar. The pressure was full on for the Eindhoven side who, if Ajax were to win, needed to take at least a point.

AZ were still playing for a place higher up the league table and thus a Europa League ticket. To make this possible, Ajax wpild have to lose against FC Twente in Enschede. It seemed the teams in Alkmaar both wanted to keep it at 0-0 as long as possible to wait and see what would happen in Enschede.

Out of nowhere

The sparse chances were mainly for AZ. PSV keeper Walter Benitez had to save twice on a shot by striker Vangelis Pavlidis and a shot by midfielder Tijani Reijnders went wide. With so little reason to cheer, FC Twente’s second goal against Ajax was announced with a lot of hullabaloo on the signs in the stadium. The news was celebrated as if PSV had just scored on the pitch in Alkmaar.

After 65 minutes, however, the change came. Out of nowhere, Xavi Simons was able to forge ahead as far as  the goalkeeper. Eye to eye with the AZ goalie, he finished neatly. 0-1. All uncertainty seemed to have come to an end.


Yet PSV narrowly escaped the equaliser a few minutes later. Forward Jesper Karlsson had a free kick but again Benitez saved. After this, it did not become exciting again, also because Ajax were 3-1 down. The result in Alkmaar was no longer important for PSV.

Just under ten minutes before time, it did become 1-1. Jesper Karlsson scored from a penalty spot, though for PSV, it was all no longer important given the score in Enschede. If AZ won, they could still pass Ajax, something the PSV supporters did not mind.

Exciting final phase

In injury time, plenty happened. PSV forward Anwar El Ghazi was shown a red card and flares were lit in the away box. Meanwhile, AZ went on the hunt for victory. It did not come, as it was forward Xavi Simons again who put PSV ahead. He made it 1-2 after which the match was also finished.

PSV finished second after a turbulent season and continue to hold out the prospect of Champions League millions. The Eindhoven club must survive two preliminary rounds in August to reach the group stage. The last two years were not successful. If PSV succeed next summer, they can add tens of millions of euros. However, a new coach is needed as Ruud van Nistelrooij quit this week.

Source: Omroep Brabant

Translator: Martijn


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