Feyenoord vs. Vitesse: Date, Time and Preview

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Feyenoord vs. Vitesse: Date, Time and Preview
Stanley Chou/Getty Images
Lucas Piazon has been in hot form for Vitesse.

Surprise title-challengers Vitesse travel to Feyenoord on Friday evening hoping to go top of the Eredivisie, at least until Sunday when Ajax play.

Peter Bosz's team have been the unexpected package in the Dutch league this season and look like they could last the course.

That is a big deal considering the side sold two of their most important players to Premier League sides in the summer when Marco van Ginkel joined Chelsea and Wilfried Bony moved to Swansea.

Mike Hewitt/Getty Images
Wilfried Bony left Vitesse in the summer.

And for a side that has never won the title—their best finish is second on five occasions—there is no small amount of excitement about this side's potential.

That is in contrast to Feyenoord, a 14-time winner of the Eredivisie, who are struggling to return to former glories under manager Ronald Koeman.

Much-decorated as a player, Koeman is finding he has his work cut out in Rotterdam and they currently sit fourth, seven points behind leaders Ajax with little hope of overturning that deficit.

 

When: Friday, Jan. 31. 7 p.m. GMT
Where: De Kuip, Rotterdam

 

Key Storylines:

The key to Vitesse's success has been the five players they have on loan from Chelsea, with one in particular, Lucas Piazon, playing a starring role.

After previously spending time on loan at La Liga side Malaga, the Brazilian moved to the Netherlands on another temporary deal and has shone, scoring 11 goals and assisting a further seven in 20 games.

This form has led to speculation about his future, but he has remained coy about it all, and is reported by Sky Sports as saying:

I don't know yet, it depends a lot on how we will end the season, it's hard to say now but I think we have a good chance of finishing in the top two and playing in the Champions League. But I'll go on my vacations, rest then we'll see.

It is dangerous for Vitesse to build the foundations of their side on players that have been loaned to them, especially when they could be involved in the Champions League next season but it is great for Chelsea who are seeing a lot of their young talent given the chance to develop in a first-team atmosphere.

The dangerman for Feyenoord is Graziano Pelle, who has scored 15 Eredivisie goals and is invaluable to the team. 

 

Prediction: Feyenoord 2-2 Vitesse

A draw last weekend saw Vitesse lose ground in the title race with Ajax, but they can put the pressure back on the champions by overtaking them with a win here.

Feyenoord are comfortable in fourth but will fancy their chances of jumping to third at the expense of Twente and moving two points behind Vitesse in the process.

With the third-highest attendance in the division, an average of 43,977, they represent a tough prospect for Vitesse, and they have won seven out of 10 at home. An away draw could prove a good result.

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