ADO 2 v 0 Heracles Almelo
The last home game before the winter break was played in a wonderful atmosphere. As the teams came onto the pitch banners were displayed that showed the bond and friendship that had existed for twenty five years between the supporters of ADO Den Haag and the giants of Italian football, Juventus. The fans from both clubs travel to watch each others team on a regular basis and the camaraderie is very strong.
This was not the prettiest game of football you will ever see, but it was a game full of passion and desire, and it was the players of ADO that had the edge throughout the match, chasing, pressurizing and closing down fast on any loose ball and any Heracles players. The work rate was tremendous.
In the centre of the pitch van Duinen and Toornstra orchestrated all that was good about ADO’s play. Ammi again was giving plenty of options down the right wing with Immers and Hocher offering openings further up the field. Boussaboun was strong as an ox and was a battle tank as he put his authority on the game.
In the eighth minute ADO got the break through, some slack defending by Willie Overtoom and Antoine van der Linden allowed van Duinen to twist his way around before placing his shot into the back of the net, superbly executed finish, 1-0.
After the goal Heracles tried to force a way back. They got close to the ADO goal without getting a real telling shot on target, this was due in main to the great block tackling by Kum and Visser who threw themselves in front of everything.
Five minutes before half time Heracles were lucky not to have a man sent off, after a challenge on Ammi by van der Linden who first got the ball, but the follow through was both dangerous and reckless; the Heracles player only receiving a yellow card. Immers also found himself in the referee’s book after remonstrating too forcibly with the official about the incident.
The second half began brightly for ADO and they looked in control, but as the minutes passed, Heracles began to apply more pressure and for a twenty minute period had the upper hand on ADO. Coutinho made some nice saves, but again the entire team worked as one, Toornstra and Supusepa being solid in defensive duties.
As the game entered its final fifteen minutes, the new sound of the Midden Noord echoed around the stadium, an old fashioned air raid siren that has been painted in ADO colours blasted it out its loud droning scream. This lifted the fans all around the stadium and the atmosphere was the best it has been since the European nights back at the start of the season.
With Heracles still was forcing the issue, it was looking as though at some point they would get a goal their possession deserved. They had been on a good run of late and looked to be preparing for a full final thrust to get the equalizing goal.
In the eighty first minute the ball hit the back of the net. John Verhoek won an aerial duel and the ball fell to Immers. Immers kept his cool as he moved forward before striking the ball cleanly into the back of the net, giving the Heracles keeper no chance. Heracles deflated, ADO ecstatic, 2-0.
Two minutes later Immers once again had the ball in the back of the net. A free kick from Tornstra saw Immers totally unmarked and finish with aplomb. Immers turned away to celebrate only for his celebrations to be cut short by the linesman waving his flag for offside.
The final whistle blew and the fans cheered their team off the pitch. Not a great game, but for intensity and work rate by both teams was exceptional.
The final game of 2011 is next Sunday away to Ajax. Everybody hoping they can do a repeat of last years surprise 1-0 win in the Amsterdam Arena.
ADO man of the match: Mike van Duinen took the game to Heracles and scored the first goal of the game.
Attendance: 10, 500