The Dutch league has produced some of the world’s greatest players and an incredible style of football over the years and that is still true today. A mixture of attacking football, young stars, and old legends are what await the fans of Eredivisie this season making Holland a favourite for football away days. We have put together the five reasons for what makes this league one of the best in Europe and why it should be top of your list to visit.

 

 1. Goals 

What gets you off your feet at a match? Goals! This is a major reason why you should put Holland’s Eredivisie at the top of your away day visit list. With an average goals per game ratio of 3.34 this league produces the most goals on average out of all the other top European leagues (Belgium First Division A – 3.1, England’s Premier League – 2.92 and France’s Ligue 1 – 2.73).

The vast number of goals is largely down to the big emphasis on attacking, expansive football which has recently began to replace more pragmatic approaches that some managers adopt in the Premier League. Due to the lack of investment in Eredivisie compared with the PL and the other top European leagues the entire league is competitive with the handful of title contenders still having to battle for every point in their chase for silverware. Like any league they have bookies favourites to win. This year Ajax and PSV are set to battle it out for the crown. However, Feyenoord look to be in the mix for a Champions League spot after the return of a Dutch legend in January.

 

2. VAR 

The biggest innovation in football for decades will be introduced to Eredivisie this season after its success in Russia this summer. VAR has, at times, caused more controversy than it has stamped out but it can certainly keep the commentators busy and the fans talking. Overall, during its use at the World Cup it was effective in stopping bigger, physical teams from holding players in the box, particularly on set pieces.

VAR allows referees to stop the game and take a second look at potential incidents should they or their assistants be unclear or poorly positions to see it. Fans have called for it to be introduced into the top leagues but many have held off. Eredivisie could lead the way in how league matches are officiated. Nonetheless, it will certainly bring big drama to games and be a hot topic of conversation throughout the season.

 

3. Young Talent 

The Dutch league has long been the scouting ground for top clubs in Europe with Ajax seemingly raided every season of its top players that they have cultivated since youth. However, because of this many young and hungry players choose the Eredivisie to make a name for themselves. The league itself is very competitive and unpredictable meaning that if you are a young player with bags of talent you can make a big splash here and put yourself on the radar of scouts.

A few young stars worth looking out for this season include: Matthijs de Ligt a very promising centre back who is now on the radar of several big clubs. Luckily, Ajax were able to retain his services – for this season at least. Hirving Lozano made a big impact in Russia this year with incredible performances for Mexico against Germany and South Korea. This left winger has pace and quick feet making him, no doubt, a huge part of PSV’s title hopes this year. Finally, another winger but playing on the right for Ajax is 21 year old David Nernes. He is another one to keep an eye on as is he continues to perform we could see him sign for a top club in the coming seasons.

 

4. Dutch Legends 

Eredivisie is well documented regarding its development of youth players, particularly Dutch players. However, this season will see two Dutch legends return to the league for full seasons. The first is Daley Blind who completed a move back to Ajax after four fairly average seasons with Manchester United. He is still a fan favourite in Amsterdam and you will certainly hear them singing his name on his return this season.

The other is a true legend in football not just in Holland. The mighty RVP (Robin van Persie), who almost single-handedly helped Manchester United lift the Premier League when he signed from Arsenal in 2012 and scored 26 goals and help create a further 15. He will always be remembered for his incredible diving chipped header at the 2014 World Cup against Spain. Just take a second to enjoy that again. This season he lines up for Feyenoord who will be buoyed by his talents staying within their ranks. With five goals and one assist in 12 games in the league after joining in January, it shows that age is just a number and class is permanent.  

 

5. Unpredictability

One of the best things about this league is its unpredictability. Due to there not being the difference in squad value that there is in Premier League, such as when Burnley play Manchester City, it means that any team can get a result and no one is ever written off.  This factor mixed with the number of goals scored in this league makes it a top pick for a football away day. With Eredivisie you just never know who will win, keeping the fans on the edge of their seats all season long.

 

 

With all this in mind it’s hard to see how an away day to Holland can’t be a priority when you’re planning your next trip. Be it a stag do or corporate football away day we have packages to suit your needs. Contact us today to see what amazing experiences we have to offer.

When the venue’s were announced for Euro 2016, I had visions of reliving France 98 with the steep and intimate but ageing Stadia producing some electric and partisan atmospheres to make for a spectacular tournament.

As it turned out these nostalgic stadiums are no longer.

The open air cauldron of the Stade Veldrome basking in Côte_d’Azur sunshine has been rebuilt… with a roof.

While in St Etienne where Michael Owen danced through the Argentine defence in the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard , known for its “English Style” design with no corner stands has now had a facelift and they’ve filled in some of the corners.

However unlike the half finished soulless stadia we had to put up with in Brazil at least our French venues have seen a season’s football played in them and do seem to have retained their atmospheric potential.

Here we’ll take a closer a look at the pick of the stadiums we have to look forward to this summer.

  1. Lyon – Grand Stade OL / Stade Des Lumieres

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A newly built stadium from scratch replacing Lyon’s home of the Stade Gerland is set to be 59,500 all seater which resembles a slightly smaller scaled Wembley Stadium.

The Grand Stade OL is currently still under construction but as of October has really started to come together and looks quite impressive from the latest set of photos.

To stay in touch with its progress follow the twitter account @grandstadeOL

  1. Marseille – Stade Velodrome

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Le Nouveau Stade Velodrome will have been finished for 2 years by the time it hosts its first Euro 2016 game, Olympique de Marseille played all of last season in their new home and the record capacity was set in their home fixture against PSG of 65,148. By all accounts the atmosphere has developed with the stadium, two sets of OM supporters groups are now housed at each of the ground, the ‘Virage Nord’ and ‘Virage Sud’ creating an atmosphere that is unrivalled in French football .

  1. Lens – Stade Bollaert-Delelis

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The setting for David Beckham to launch himself on the international stage in England’s group game with Columbia in 98, Stade Bollaert-Delelis has also seen renovation, however it has retained a lot of its charm, the “English style” remains with the 4 steep individual stands and at 35,000 it is one of the smallest of all the Euro 2016 venues.

With its steep grandstands at enclosed up tiers even though one of the smallest we expect the atmosphere here to be one of the best during its 3 group and one last 16 game Lens is set to host.