Fellow Yellows – Sportvereniging Roda Juliana Combinatie Kerkrade

Eredivisie
Roda JC Kerkrade v NEC Nijmegen
Saturday, 8th March 2014, 6.45pm
Parkstad Limburg Stadion
Entrance €17.50, Programme 50c
Distance 346 miles, Attendance 15421
Thirty minutes after leaving Aachen’s Neuer Tivoli stadium, Christian and I were safely parked up, across the border in the Netherlands, 100 metres from yet another yellow stadium.
Copy of 140308 Roda JC Kerkrade (12)With plenty of time to spare, we admired the floodlight and stadium design, collected our pre-arranged tickets from the Fan Shop, watched arriving players sign autographs and, settled down for a coffee at the ice-cream parlour beside the Zuid West turnstiles. Long before the stadium opened, for this massive six-pointer, there was even enough time to blag my way through the VIP entrance and out on to the pitch.
Copy of 140308 Roda JC Kerkrade (21)w2
With two-up-two-down – one in each direction via somewhat controversial play-offs – going into the game Roda sat at the foot of the table, three points below tonight’s visitors, NEC. Fairly predictably, inside the air was a thick mix of excitement and tension.
Our seats in the Oost tribune were nestled between the enthusiastic home “Kidscorner” and the away fans who started the evening flag-waving and, finished it by throwing seats on to the pitch.
Players warmed up as rogue sprinklers peppered the surface. Soon choreographed fireworks lit the sky as a red plume filled the away end. As the combined smoke faded into the night air, like earlier, the teams changed ends and the home side kicked off. A typically superstitious thought ran through my mind that, we may be about to see a repeat of Aachen’s fate but, this was quickly dispelled.

Copy of 140308 Roda JC Kerkrade (83)w

Whilst it would take half and hour for the first goal to arrive, chances before were plentiful. First Guus Hupperts headed just wide  then, NEC’s Navarone Foor’s pot shot missed the target whilst home keeper Filip Kurto saved the following effort well. Roda’s Berry Powel was hauled down on the edge of the box, Mitchell Donald air-kicked in a great shooting position and, superb play from Hupperts found Marc Höcher, whose cross was only fractionally missed by Amuad Sutchuin Djoum.
As NEC focussed all their attacks through Scouser, Michael Higdon; Roda directed play at Powel who harried the keeper mercilessly. When Karl-Johan Johnsson panicked on one such occasion, Hupperts reacted first and slotted home bringing, both a fanfare of carnival music and cheers of relief.
Though Roda dominated in all areas, an immediate counter drew another fine save from Kurto. With a Powel goal disallowed and Höcher’s free kick well saved, the slender advantage after the break gave NEC some heart but once Roda settled again, the pressure was much as it had been before.
Copy of 140308 Roda JC Kerkrade (93)wMitchell Donald sent a warning header just over before the announcer again screamed out the score in tandem with delighted supporters, finishing off, “DANKE… BITTE!” The second goal had come direct from Höcher’s free kick which looped over the Johnsson’s head. Intended or not, Hupperts turned in the third, minutes later, after a brilliant move cut open the visiting defence.
At 3-0 up in such a vital fixture, most teams would’ve protected their lead… not Roda. As their supporters taunted Johnsson, the team pushed on. Contrastingly, the resigned travelling support hardly made a murmur when Higdon reduced the deficit.
Copy of 140308 Roda JC Kerkrade (127)w
Whilst the score wouldn’t change, in the final 25mins, we’d see celebrated time-wasting, needless yellow cards, dubious cramp and most incredibly, the game playing on for nearly five minutes with two balls on the pitch. Penalties were won and missed by both teams and the announcer yelled in perfect in English “…THE MOMENT YOU’VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR…” when fans favourite Frank Demouge returned from injury.
A late NEC charge came to nothing whilst (former Bournemouth striker) Demouge’s cameo – almost scoring with both his first two touches, lifting the crowd and seeing his marker sent off – was enough to help save the three points.
Copy of 140308 Roda JC Kerkrade (14)wThere had been far too many adverts and the cash-for-tokens-for-food refreshment stalls were more confusing to me than the Dutch language but, supporters were again incredibly friendly and, their celebration of youth was heart-warming. Given the all–action entertainment they provided us, one can only hope they can now maintain the momentum and pull themselves clear of trouble.
Two stadiums in two countries, fifteen minutes apart is a truly wonderful gift from the footballing gods; ending the day with this Roda win was the icing on the cake.
shorts league
P
W
D
L
F
A
Pts
Pts/P
GD/P
red
1
1
0
0
4
1
3
3
3
black
18
8
2
8
31
22
26
1.44
0.5
yellow
1
0
0
1
0
2
0
0
-2
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Initially appearing in the 2013-14 Watford FC matchday programmes, consequently these reports will have a delayed publication on here.

140308 Roda JC prog (1)

This entry was posted in 2013-2014, Eredivisie, Fellow Yellows and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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