On a cold Saturday evening, ADO Den Haag played host to NAC Breda, a team that was prior to kick-off, joint bottom of the Eredivisie. The game a great opportunity to get back on track after the much criticised defeat at Venlo last weekend.
The game saw a better performance from ADO, they were more expansive, and some of the long cross field balls were accurate and created openings for Sheraldo Becker and Elson Hooi to get crosses in.
Yet after twelve minutes ADO went a goal down. Fabian Sporkslede crossed the ball in from the right. Luka Ilic was left with the freedom of the penalty area, his first shot struck the post, the rebound fell nicely to him to smash the ball past Indy Groothuizen in the ADO goal, 0-1.
ADO went straight back on the attack, plenty of crosses into the area again, but nothing that created any danger to the NAC defence. Then after seventeen minutes Hooi played the ball inside to Nasser El Khayati whose touch opened up space for the leading scorer to hammer the ball into the net, 1-1.
The half continued to see ADO in possession, despite this the team from Breda were rarely threatened. The highlight was a wonderful curling shot from El Khayati that forced NAC keeper Benjamin van Leer into a great full stretch diving save that just managed to turn the ball around the post. The half time whistle blew and the crowd were not happy.
The second half was basically all ADO, it was rare to see NAC have any long spells of the ball in the ADO half. The game became frustrating for the fans. NAC were there for the beating, but some players were not willing to fight for the club colours. Becker being the target of most of the jeers, his unwillingness to chase the ball and give up too easily has been mentioned a lot in recent weeks. On the other hand, Hooi was a dynamo, he never stopped running or trying. When he lost the ball he fought hard to get it back, his name chanted time and time again from the stands.
ADO got chances as time ticked away. Twice ADO hit the bar. Firstly from a free-kick by El Khayati, then a towering header from Lex Immers crashed against the frame of the goal.
ADO trainer Fons Groenendijk tried to mix it up and brought on Erik Falkenburg and Thijmen Goppel to inject some urgency. The crowd backed the team vocally, but the final whistle blew and the cheers turned to a few jeers.
A very disappointing outcome for ADO. Next up is the big cup game away to Feyenoord next Thursday night in the Kuip.
ADO Den Haag’s next home game is on Sunday 11th November against AZ Alkmaar, kick-off 14:30. A club card is not needed for this game. Go to stadium windows on day of game with your photo ID and go enjoy some live football.
Text & photos by Neal McClimon of www.adoforexpats.com