De Vijverberg, Eereste Divisie, 14/2/20
Vereniging Betaald Voetbal
Founded – 1954
Nickname – Superboeren (Super Farmers)
Honours – Eerste Divisie 1991, 2007, 2010
Current Division – Eerste Divisie
Random Fact – Ex Aberdeen manager Jimmy Calderwoods last job in fitba was as manager of the club in 2014. He left after one month in charge after two key players were sold without his knowledge prior to the start of the season.
I am not going to lie here. Wee Man is not my sidekick on this trip. Fitbas not the same without him. A week ago we were raking about Sauchie. This weekend im trailing about the Netherlands (you are not allowed to call it Holland) on my tod. Next time hopefully.
Today I left Aberdeen at 6am. The next thing I know, I am in Doetinchem, home of De Graafschap. A team who are chasing the dream of promotion back to play the big boys, Ajax, PSV and Feyenoord after a years absence. Going by their performance tonight I think the will make it. Calm and professional is how to describe it. They are also the team where Aberdeen signed Jeffery “wildepoopen” de Visscher from.
My Vijverberg experience started on a high note. As I had entered my gate early I had missed the club shop meaning I couldn’t get my scarf. I got speaking to a steward and my issue came up. Credit to her she took me through the ground before the gates were open. Giving me a quality look at an empty Vijverberg. Top gesture and I got my scarf. A tidy ground. Quite similar to alot of the newer built grounds in the Netherlands. One tier same height all the way around with corners filled in. After my impromptue tour of De Vijverberg I inevitably found myself in the fan bar. It is quality and if Aberdeen are to do it and the new unwanted Kingsford they should get themselves to the Netherlands for ideas. De Graafschaps is decorated with scarves and shirts from all over the world. This inclusive of a 2004 ADT sponsored Dons top but more randomly a Queens Park top. The only two Scottish tops there. There are hundreds of scarves hanging too. Putting my scarf collection of sixty two to shame(every team outwith Scotland I have been too) . A good bar with live music, but in all honesty in general Dutch clubs always seem to get their supporters bars spot on. I have been in a few now so I can put meat on the bones. It was good to see Roda JC fans allowed in too. If anuone from AFC are reading I will easily be the clubs researcher into these matters
My Vijverberg experience didnt go all well though. Once in the ground I realised I was in with the Ultras. A good group and lively. But not a fan of photos being taken. Even when I was trying to capture the ground I had people having a go at me. Clearly a tourist(with my Dons hat on) it should have clicked. Eventually there was a girl who seemed to be the official photographer of the group who spoke to me and apologised. Once it was established I was not police it was all good. ACAB and all that. No harm done
The game wasnt great. Not much to say about it in truth. A professional performance from a good team against a team on the slide. Goals from Hamdoui and Southampton loanee Callum Slattery ensured the title/promition push was still on. With Volendam drawing the Super Farmers opened a gap between second and third. Top team and friends of mine Cambuur won though. De Graafschap and Cambuur to go up I would guess. Roda JC on the other hand are clearly a club struggling. I will see you guys in Kerkrade in April
A little note on Doetinchem. Another fine example of Dutch welcoming and hospitality. I have a sore head due to some of the fine publicans of the city.