Last week, RKC Waalwijk registered a deserved 2-1 win over Excelsior. The Eredivisionist still has to make every effort to avoid relegation (for the time being). Can you make up the gap in Kralingen?
In Waalwijk, little was visible about the good shape of Excelsior. The Kralingse team managed to win its last two duels in the Eredivisie, 4-5 against Heracles Almelo and 4-2 against AZ, but that line was by no means continued in the semifinals of the play-offs. The men of Ricardo Moniz had a hard time the entire match with the attacking urge of RKC. Excelsior could have taken the lead in the first half via Elías Már Ómarsson, but the Icelandic striker did not give enough direction to his header. In the second half, twenty minutes after the opening goal of RKC, Excelsior managed to score out of nowhere. Jeffry Fortes suddenly received the ball as a gift and was able to use it. Excelsior could not enjoy the lead for a long time, as RKC scored the winning goal a few minutes later (2-1). Excelsior must therefore win in the return match to prevent relegation to the Kitchen Champion Division.
Ricardo Moniz cannot use Ali Messaoud on Wednesday evening. The midfielder has sustained an injury to the game in Waalwijk and will not be able to play in Kralingen. Desevio Payne and Denis Mahmudov, who have been injured for some time, are also not included. In addition, it came out this week that Mounir El Hamdaoui is also not sure about the return match. The former striker of AZ and Ajax is suffering from an injury and therefore missed the last training.
RKC Waalwijk has taken a big step towards the final of the play-offs for promotion to the Eredivisie. Fred Grim’s team convincingly beat Excelsior with 2-1, leaving the Waalwijkers with half a leg in the final. Grim saw that his men were in control from the start of the game. Mario Bilate and Juriën Gaari were the surefire RKC men in the Mandemakers Stadium. The same Bilate had failed to open the score several times in the first half, but managed to find the net just after the break.
RKC, which can also prepare itself for the “Frenkie millions” after the top transfer from Frenkie de Jong to Barcelona, has asserted itself positively in the semifinals of the play-offs. Not only did the Waalwijk players play better football than Excelsior, their eagerness also radiated. Based on the first leg, RKC seems to be ready for the first Eredivisie season since 2014.