Chelsea / Vitesse / Cobham East Roundup: 4 February 2014

Dean Mouhtaropoulos

Vitesse earns a hard-fought point in Rotterdam, plus we've got a Chelsea banner sighting and new Sfeerverslag!

Vitesse extended it's Eredivisie unbeaten streak to twelve games as the Arnhem club drew with Feyenoord in Rotterdam. Vitesse has two matches this week, the first of which is tonight against AZ, and looks to make up a bit of lost ground in the table.

As always, here's our latest look into what's happening with our second-favourite club.

Vitesse draws 1-1 with Feyenoord

I watched the match, but failed to jot down any notes, and after watching the Chelsea - Manchester City match, I don't remember a lot of the details about Vitesse - Feyenoord (apparently, my brain can only retain about 90 minutes of football at any given time). However, I do have a few general black and yellow thoughts that managed to avoid being washed away by the waves of blue -

  • Lucas Piazon was quiet for the second match in a row. I don't think there's anything amiss, however, and fully expect that we'll see him get back on track this week.
  • For the second match in a row, the lone Vitesse goal came from the one outfield player on the pitch who focuses more on defence than offence. This time, it was centreback and captain Guram Kashia (back in the lineup after after picking up too many yellow cards and being forced to sit the Gelderse derby out), who managed to drive a header into the back of the net from a Renato Ibarra cross.
  • Patrick van Aanholt has been very aggressive on offence of late.
  • Bertrand Traore came on for Mike Havenaar in the second half and looked impressive in his thirty or so minutes. I can't wait to see what he can do with a full ninety.

Despite only picking up two points in the last two matches, OptaJohan has a few tidbits to help us look at these things in a positive light -

  • For the first time ever, Vitesse have gone unbeaten in the Eredivisie away games against the Dutch big three (Ajax, Feyenoord, and PSV).
  • Of the entire Premier League, La Liga, the Bundesliga, Serie A, Ligue 1, and Eredivisie, there are only three teams that have scored in every league match. Those teams are Juventus, Bayern Munich, and Vitesse Arnhem.

So yeah, Vitesse is in excellent shape and sits a mere two points behind the thirty-two-time Eredivisie and four-time European champions, Ajax.

As in recent weeks, we have the good fortune to be able to reproduce the Vitesse portions of the excellent loan reports that @chelseayouth puts out each week (you can read the full loan report here) -

The European weekend kicked off with a big clash at the business end of the Eredivisie table as fourth-placed Feyenoord hosted Vitesse, who went into De Kuip two points behind league leaders Ajax in second. Lucas Piazon, Christian Atsu and Patrick van Aanholt started in an unchanged selection by Peter Bosz, whilst Bertrand Traore played most of the second half as a substitute in a 1-1 draw which threatened to further detail Vitesse’s title ambitions, but Ajax dropped points at Utrecht on Sunday to leave things as they were after the latest round of action.

It was a third consecutive sub-par display by the Gelderlanders, even if a point away to a tough opponent like Feyenoord is largely looked upon as a positive. After a poor start they played half an hour of good football and silenced the crowd, but then went behind shortly before half time as Ronald Koeman’s side picked up the tempo. Captain Guram Kashia equalised earlier in the second half and Vitesse had the better chances to win it late on – notably through Atsu and Zakaria Labyad – but took a point back home with them.

Piazon was quiet once again but whereas he was replaced last time out at home to NEC Nijmegen, he did complete the match this time and played with Traore for the first time in competitive action. The Burkinabe floated between a role wide on the right and a centre forward position, and was lively if a bit casual in his approach during decisive moments.

Atsu was arguably the most impressive of the four Chelsea boys involved, seeing a lot of the ball and making incisive movements, but found his finishing lacking on two or three occasions. Van Aanholt, meanwhile, played his usual game, going close to a goal with a shot which drew a good save from Erwin Mulder, and was largely untested at the back with Feyenoord instead giving right-back Kelvin Leerdam a torrid time through the impressive Jean-Paul Boetius.

Match highlights

New Sfeerverslag? Why, thank you Vitesse video team, don't mind if I do.

Chelsea banner sighting

I was a bit surprised to see one of the Vitesse faithful unfurl a Papendal West banner in Rotterdam, but obviously it looks fantastic.

Vitesse vs. AZ tonight, kickoff at 7:45PM GMT

One man's fixture congestion is another man's terrific week of football. Vitesse plays AZ tonight at the Gelredome and plays another home match on Friday night against ADO Den Haag, so we have some great opportunities to see Cobham East in action this week.

Despite what disgruntled onlookers may lead you to believe, Vitesse is not made up of entirely Chelsea players. In fact, Vitesse has never started more than three Chelsea loanees at a time. That said, hopefully Vitesse will soon field a fourth this week, and we'll see Bertrand Traore join Lucas Piazon, Patrick van Aanholt, and Christian Atsu in the starting eleven.

Two great friends of WAGNH (GFOWAGs? Needs some work), Peter McVitie and Mark Will Stinson, will be at the Gelredome tonight and hopefully we'll be able to get at least one of their accounts of the match in the next roundup (which we'll try to have before Friday night's match).

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