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AZ 2 (Maher 11, Altidore 13)
PSV 1 (Locadia 30)
AZ Alkmaar hit a quickfire double to defeat favourites PSV Eindhoven two goals to one in De Kuip, Rotterdam to win their fourth KNVB Beker. The goals came from American international Jozy Altidore and Adam Maher. 19-year-old Maher showed the veterans of PSV how it’s done with an excellent opening goal and overall majestic performance.
In a dream start, Gertjan Verbeek’s side went a goal ahead from some magic from the young attacking maestro. Recieving the ball on the edge of the area, Maher ghosted past several PSV defenders and slotted the ball past Boy Waterman in the PSV goal after only 11 minutes. It was horrendous defending by Dick Advocaat’s team but a sublime piece of skill and the finish to match from Maher.
PSV needed to re-group and quickly, but unfortunately for De Boeren, it was not quick enough and they were hit with a sucker punch, two minutes later. The powerful Altidore scored his 32nd goal in all competitions this season on 13 minutes. A long ball through from Viktor Elm set-up the big strong American who ventured into the box, and forced a strong shot underneath Waterman. It was poor goalkeeping and poor defending all around from PSV again.
AZ were in full control is respect of the scoreboard but they were lucky to escape a good penalty shout against them. A Jurgen Locadia strike appeared to hit the arm of defender Nick Viergever, but referee Bjorn Kuiper waved play on.
It took some excellent work from Dries Mertens to create the PSV goal. Mertens sped past two defenders and crossed towards the back post where the ball met Wilfried Bouma’s head. Bouma’s header zipped across the goal for youngster Locadia, picked ahead of Tim Matavz for today’s game, to finish to give PSV some faith. This goal was PSV’s 144th goal in just 49 games this season and this equals a club record they set back in the 1987/88 season.
After the break, PSV came out looking likely that the Eindhoven side would reel in AZ during the second half, but chances for Mertens, Locadia and Strootman went begging and Jermain Lens missed a glorious opporuntity ten minutes from time, crashing the post with his close range shot.
AZ now enter Europe next season without having the worry of the playoffs, they will begin in the fourth qualifying round of the UEFA Europa League. It is their first silverware since their 2009 Eredivisie title.
After the match, Jozy Altidore stated that this season ‘boys became men’ in this AZ side and on this performance, we can see that statement is accurate. What the future holds for this team is set to be seen with Maher almost certain to move on and Altidore, on this form, will be a wanted man throughout Europe.
Some major changes will happen this summer for PSV and on this display, they are well needed, whether or not Marcel Brands will be given the chance to spend money will need to be seen.
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