Newcastle interest a distraction for De Boer ahead of Die Klassieker
Feyenoord have just one win in 17 Die Klassieker clashes with Ajax as second hosts third in the Eredivisie at the Amesterdam ArenA. That explains why the Rotterdam outfit are 9/4 outsiders for victory with Coral.
While Ajax boast vastly superior status in the head-to-head record, manager Frank de Boer may have his eye on pastures new. Tabloid reports claim the vacancy at Newcastle United is interesting him, and the former Barcelona defender could well take on the Tyneside project this summer.
For now, De Boer and his Amsterdam outfit are 11/10 favourites for three points against Feyenoord, as they aim to keep the pressure up on Dutch league leaders PSV Einhoven. A draw is a 5/2 chance, but recent history shows this result is less likely at Ajax than in Rotterdam.
If Feyenoord are to take advantage of the intrigue and speculation surrounding De Boer’s future, then they can look to an ensemble cast that are all chipping in to replace the goals of Graziano Pelle.
Among them is a name that should be familiar to British audiences; Colin Kazim-Richards. This versatile Turkish forward, who counts Brighton and Hove Albion, Sheffield United and Blackburn Rovers as former clubs, has netted on each of his last three Eredivisie away days.
Back Kazim-Richards to keep this purple patch on the road going by scoring again anytime at 7/4. Fellow forward Mitchell te Vrede, meanwhile, is 15/8 in the same market and Feyenoord top scorer Jens Toornstra is splendid value at a tasty 10/3.
The visitors shall miss winger Elvis Manu from their front three with a groin problem here, but that trio can cover for him. For Ajax, meanwhile, Danish winger Viktor Fischer remains a long-term absentee.
Leading marksman Arkadiusz Milik is now quite literally European football’s Golden Boy, after succeeding Paul Pogba as the award winner for the best young player on the continent. The 20-year-old has 17 for the season across all competitions, and will be looking to help Robert Lewandowski fire Poland to Euro 2016 this year.
Milik looks a little short at 5/4, but for once it might be more prudent if De Boer start Iceland international and fellow frontman Kolbeinn Sigthorsson for this fixture, as he has three in as many Die Klassieker outings.
Why not back Sigthorsson, linked with QPR last summer, at better odds of 6/4 in the anytime market, then? South African holder Thulani Serero, meanwhile, will want to show Bafana Bafana they were foolish to leave him out of their squad for the Africa Cup of Nations finals. The Ajax anchorman is a 4/1 shot to score here.
As both sides have goals in them, hosts Ajax look good value at 16/5 to win but also see Feyenoord score. Backing a 2-1 home victory is also worth considering at 17/2, as the Amsterdam side have recorded that exact result in three of the last nine meetings.