Ajax beats Zwolle 3-0 to go top of Dutch league
AMSTERDAM (AP) — Defending champion Ajax went top of the Dutch league for the first time this season after beating PEC Zwolle 3-0 on Sunday, and Feyenoord moved level on points with second-place PSV Eindhoven by edging out Roda JC 1-0.
PSV went into the weekend as league leader but lost 2-1 to SC Heerenveen on Saturday and dropped to second after Ajax’s victory.
Icelandic striker Kolbeinn Sigthorsson gave Ajax the lead in the 19th minute with a shot from the right into the far corner. Captain Siem de Jong made it 2-0 seven minutes later with a sharp turn and shot. Substitute Derk Boerrigter completed the scoring 10 minutes from the final whistle with a tap in from close range after a strong run and cross from the left by Christian Eriksen.
Ajax coach Frank de Boer praised his side’s domination against Zwolle and other opponents this season.
“I’m convinced that if you play like that ... you will win 99 times out of 100,” De Boer said. “We were a bit sloppy at times, but we didn’t give away any real chances and in the end it could have been six- or seven-nil if we’d been a little sharper.”
In Kerkrade, Italian striker Graziano Pelle scored his 20th league goal of the season with a header from a cross by Ruben Schaken to give Feyenoord victory.
Feyenoord was lucky to survive a spirited comeback by Roda in the second half. The home team looked to have earned a spot kick shortly after the break when captain Sanharib Malki was floored in the penalty area, but referee Peter Vink waved away his appeals.
“It was a 100 percent penalty. No discussion,” Roda coach Ruud Brood said. “Based on the second half, we deserved a goal.”
In Enschede, FC Twente could not escape from its downward spiral, losing 1-0 to Vitesse Arnhem after missing a string of good chances. Vitesse striker Wilfried Bony made no such mistake, calmly slotting in his only opportunity of the match in the 63rd minute for his league-leading 24th goal of the season.
Twente, which fired coach Steve McClaren two weeks ago, has not won a match in 2013 and has slipped to sixth place after looking like a title candidate for much of the first half of the season.