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Preview: Heerenveen vs. RKC Waalwijk - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's Eredivisie clash between Heerenveen and RKC Waalwijk, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Heerenveen play host to RKC Waalwijk on Thursday evening looking to end a run of three successive defeats in the Eredivisie.

While the home side begin the week in eighth position, the visitors are down in 14th place after losing four games in a row.


Match preview

When Heerenveen started the season with five wins from seven matches, there was genuine hope that the club could make a challenge for the league title.

However, just four points have been recorded from their last eight contests, leaving De Superfriezen cut adrift from the teams challenge for Europa League qualification.

To further complicate matters, boss Johnny Jansen has recorded a positive coronavirus test, leaving him unable to fulfil his duties on the bench for the foreseeable future.

His side followed that development by going 3-0 behind against Fortuna Sittard within 37 minutes, ensuring that confidence continued to drain away from this group of players.

While the upcoming schedule is generous to Heerenveen, Jansen will be aware that getting their first win on the board since November 1 will prove to be a difficult task.

A lack of belief is also a factor at opponents Waalwijk, who have lost each of their last four encounters in the Dutch top flight.

The latest setback came at home to fellow strugglers ADO Den Haag, and Fred Grim knows he is under pressure to deliver a change in fortunes as soon as possible.

With neither Ajax or Feyenoord on their fixture list until April 11 and just six points separating them and ninth-placed Sparta Rotterdam, there is an opportunity to make headway up the standings.

Nevertheless, a fifth successive defeat will leave the Waalwijk hierarchy with decisions to make regarding Grim's long-term future, aware that an extended run without success will inevitably result in a spell in the bottom three.

Heerenveen Eredivisie form: DDDLLL

RKC Waalwijk Eredivisie form: WWLLLL


Team News

Heerenveen delivered an improved second-half showing against Sittard on the back of substitutions being made during the second half.

That could lead to Jansen handing opportunities to Arjen van der Heide and Ibrahim Dresevic on Thursday night.

Grim will also make changes to his Waalwijk XI, which should include Sylla Sow being provided with a chance in the final third.

Vitalie Damascan is also pushing for a recall to the team with James Efmorfidis expected to drop down to the substitutes' bench.

Heerenveen possible starting lineup:
Mulder; Akujobi, Dresevic, Bochniewicz, Woudenberg; Kongolo, J.Veerman, De Jong; Van der Heide, H.Veerman, Van Bergen

RKC Waalwijk possible starting lineup:
Lamprou; Bakari, Meulensteen, Touba, Quasten; Azhil, Anita, Venne; Sow, Stokkers, Daneels


SM words green background

We say: Heerenveen 2-1 RKC Waalwijk

Given their respective losing streaks, do not expect this encounter to be full of quality. Nevertheless, Heerenveen have the better options at their disposal, and this should be the ideal opportunity for the home side to get their season back on track.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a home win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home Win:data


ID:430175:cQx

How you voted: Heerenveen vs RKC Waalwijk

Heerenveen
79.4%
Draw
13.2%
RKC Waalwijk
7.4%
68
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PSV Eindhoven players celebrate in October 2020
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Todays Game Header Right
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Ajax20162266155150
2PSV EindhovenPSV21144349222746
3Vitesse21133534191542
4AZ AlkmaarAZ21117345311440
5Feyenoord20115437201738
6Groningen2010462823534
7FC Twente218673328530
8Heerenveen217862927229
9FC UtrechtUtrecht2061042727028
10Heracles218492430-628
11Fortuna SittardSittard2174103140-925
12Sparta RotterdamSparta206592932-323
13PEC Zwolle2141162633-723
14VVV-VenloVVV-Venlo2064103449-1522
15RKC WaalwijkRKC Waalwijk2238111835-1717
16Willem II2034132442-1813
17ADO Den HaagADO Den Haag2026121745-2812
18EmmenEmmen2207151750-337

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