Friday, October 17, 2008

PSV - NAC Breda preview

As PSV enters week six of the Eredivisie season they face a perilous test against a powerful NAC Breda. After finishing third last season, manager Robert Maaskant has NAC playing some of the best attacking Football in the Netherlands. Their striking tandem of Matthew Amoah and Anthony Lurling have been pounding goals into the back of the net at an alarming rate and served well by an extremely experienced midfield of Tom van der Leegte, Ellery Cairo, Martijn Reuser and Csaba Fehér. Whether they can maintain this pace during the year and possess the bench depth needed with a mature lineup remains to be seen, however they could pose a great deal of trouble to PSV tomorrow.

PSV's issues are particularly concerning for the match as they not only have a critical Champions League match against Olympique Marseille next Wednesday but have had many of their players away on international duty, only to return practice today. Tactically, proper preparation is thrown asunder and Hubb Stevens will need to adapt quickly to dealing with player fatigue and focus. In addressing the problem he commented:

“We have decided to train behind closed doors, so we can prepare the team for tomorrow night’s game at our ease.”

Hubb Stevens noted that his club is fully healthy after the break:

"We have a full-strength squad to select from and as far as I know none of the players collected injuries on international duty. Bas Roorda is the only player who is sidelined with an injury."

Given that Jason Culina, Carlos Salcido and Edison Méndez only arrived today from extended trips it is unclear what type of lineup PSV will employ. However assuming all are healthy and ready-to-go, I expect the following lineup:

Andreas Isaksson
Erik Pieters, Jeremie Bréchet,Dirk Marcellis,Carlos Salcido
Timmy Simons,Ibrahim Afelley,Edison Mendez/Balázs Dzsudzsák,Jason Culina/Stijn Wuytens
Nordin Amrabat,Danny Koevermans