Friday January 26, 2024 at 9:52 PM
FC Groningen won big against Jong AZ on Friday evening. In Euroborg it was 4-1 for the team of coach Dick Lukkien. At halftime it was 2-1 thanks to goals from Johan Hove and Romano Postema. After the break, Postema scored again and Thom van Bergen put the final score on the board. The win equaled the longest unbeaten streak; 13 matches (in all competitions). Striker Rui Mendes made his debut for the club.
The first home game of 2024 started with a very impressive In Memoriam in which players, staff and 20,100 supporters in Euroborg jointly honored the FC supporters who died in the past calendar year. Relatives of the 52 pre-registered supporters were present in the stadium, some stood with torches along the field.
FC Groningen fell behind after almost fifteen minutes of football. Jong AZ quickly switched after a deflected shot by Joey Pelupessy. Striker Ernest Poku dribbled into the penalty area with the ball at his feet and shot the ball hard behind goalkeeper Hidde Jurjus, 0-1.
The Pride of the North was not fooled and continued to put pressure on the opponent through the forward four and midfield. After 19 minutes, Wouter Prins curled a free ball from the side onto the crossbar. FC Groningen leveled after 22 minutes of play. Thijmen Blokzijl shifted the game to the left with a long crossball. Back Prins made the move, crossed and his cross was shot in via a volley by Johan Hove, 1-1.
Romano Postema took the lead from the spot five minutes later. A shot by Jorg Schreuders hit the hand of a Jong AZ defender, causing referee Erwin Blank to whistle for the penalty, 2-1. After the goal, Postema and Valente had opportunities to extend the lead, but it remained 2-1 at halftime.
FC Groningen took a bigger lead after an hour of play. Valente cleverly kept a ball in and played in Thom van Bergen. The attacker nicely turned away from his opponent and found Postema with a through ball. The striker finished coolly, 3-1.
The announcer at 3-1 was the birthday boy himself ten minutes later. A cross from Marco Rente could not be processed properly by the guests’ defense. The ball arrived at Van Bergen’s feet. The attacker didn’t think twice and shot home hard, 4-1.
Rui Mendes came on to replace Schreuders shortly after the fourth FC goal. His debut for the Pride of the North, which the Portuguese took over from FC Emmen earlier this week. Later, Kristian Lien and Tika de Jonge also came on for Van Bergen and Valente. Fofin Turay was also allowed to come on, replacing goalgetter Postema.
In the final phase, Lien had another chance on a pass from Hove, but the Norwegian pushed the ball wide. De Jonge was also close to scoring. The 4-1 win equaled the longest unbeaten streak in club history; 13 matches.
The post first appeared on www.fcgroningen.nl