AZ has surprisingly suffered the second defeat of this Premier League season on Saturday-evening. The Alkmaarders lost 2-4 in the Cars Jeans Stadium against sc Heerenveen.
Halfway Heerenveen already led 1-3, thanks to an early goal by defender Sven Botman. Ron Vlaar equalized on behalf of AZ and then Rodney Kongolo and Jens Odgaard scored for the visitors.
In the second half, Calvin Stengs narrowed the deficit to 2-3, but AZ didn't get any further. In fact, Teun Koopmeiners' own goal made it 2-4.
Because of the defeat, the gap between AZ and the leader Ajax increases to six points. The team from Amsterdam won with difficulty 1-2 with RKC Waalwijk on Saturday evening. Heerenveen is in the middle bracket with sixteen points from ten games.
AZ can recover on Thursday from the defeat against the Frisians. The team of coach Arne Slot then plays in the group phase of the Europa League against Kazakh Astana.
Joy at Heerenveen after the goal of Rodney Kongolo. (Photo Pro Shots)
Number of AZ goals counter doubled
AZ can again have Myron Boadu against Astana, who was suspended against Heerenveen. With Ferdy Druijff in the forefront, the Alkmaar club was attackingly less powerful, but the four goals were more striking. In the nine previous games, AZ only gave up four goals in total.
Already after seven minutes it was the first time for Heerenveen in The Hague. Ajax mercenary Botman headed in a corner from Joey Veerman (0-1). AZ's 1-1 was a similar goal. The corner was from Koopmeiners and Vlaar worked the ball in with his head inside.
AZ then had chances for a lead, but halfway the visitors led 1-3. After 36 minutes Rodney Kongolo made the 1-2 with a low and placed shot and in the extra time it was again hit for the Frisians. Odgaard tapped in at the second post.
Calvin Stengs scored AZ's second goal. (Photo: Pro Shtos)
Koopmeiners in error
With a margin of two, AZ was faced with a tough task after the break, but thanks to a quick goal from Stengs, the Alkmaar supporters were able to hope again. The Jong Oranje attacker shot in from the right. Heerenveen goalie Warner Hahn hit the ball, but it still rolled over the line (2-3).
Fifteen minutes later Heerenveen ran out again and Koopmeiners was allowed to charge. The captain was able to save by Kongolo's effort, but he hit the ball wrong, making it his own goal (2-4).
By the 2-4, the game was as good as decided. It was not really exciting anymore in The Hague, where AZ lost a home game for the first time this season.
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