On Wednesday night ADO Den Haag played in the first round of the KNVB Beker (Cup) and for the twelfth time in a row it is an away fixture, this time away at NEC Nijmegen. ADO’s recent fortunes in the cup have not been good, so after last weekend’s bad performance at FC Twente, it was a game to put things right.
The ADO coach Zeljko Petrovic made some changes to his starting eleven, the biggest change was bringing in the loyal second choice goal keeper Robert Zwinkels. The game started with ADO pushing forward, but the game soon settled down to be played in the middle third of the pitch. Lots of tough tackling, a real cup game of guts and thunder.
With the score level at half-time, 0-0, things could only improve. Chances began to open up, Edouard Duplan going close for ADO and Zwinkels was forced into a good close range save from Taiwo Awoniyi. ADO brought on Sheraldo Becker with twenty minutes remaining. He saw two efforts go close, but no side could break the deadlock.
So extra-time it was. The game became more stretched and end to end, both sides finding more space. In the 105th minute the home side got a penalty. Tommie Beugelsdijk tripping Awoniyi just inside the area. Gregor Breinburg converted the spot-kick with ease, sending Zwinkels the wrong way. 1-0.
With ten minutes remaining of extra-time Petrovic gave Gervane Kastaneer the chance to keep his good goal scoring record this season going. Four minutes after his introduction, he did what he is paid to do, sweeping the ball across the line from a cross from the right to make it 1-1.
The whistle blew and the game went to the dreaded penalty shootout, something ADO have had not had any recent joy in. Beugelsdijk stepped up take the first penalty and calmly put it beyond the NEC keeper. The penalties went well for both sides until it reached 2-3. Then it was NEC player Andre Fomitschow who stepped up, Zwinkels guessed correctly and saved his effort. ADO then finished off the hosts scoring the rest of their five penalties, final score 3-5. ADO Den Haag’s other penalty takers were Achraf El Mahdioui, Danny Bakker, Sheraldo Becker and Ruben Schaken.
The players raced to the 150 fans behind the goal to celebrate the win. Now all ADO need is some luck to get a home draw in the next round!