Ajax held in opener, Feyenoord off to winning start
Last Updated: August 12, 2012 7:02pm
Gregory van der Wiel: On the mark for Ajax in their draw with AZ Alkmaar
Champions Ajax were held to a 2-2 draw by AZ Alkmaar in their opening game of the new Eredivisie season.
Kolbeinn Sigthorsson's 83rd minute equaliser rescued a point for Ajax at the Amsterdam ArenA against AZ Alkmaar.
They looked like they were well on their way to the perfect start to their campaign when Gregory van der Wiel's explosive 25-yard strike rocketed past AZ goalkeeper Esteban Alvarado but two goals in three minutes changed the complexion of the game.
Jozy Altidore took the ball past defender Toby Alderweireld to go one-on-one with Ajax goalkeeper Kenneth Vermeer before slotting home three minutes after the interval and AZ went ahead almost straight after when the United States striker fired into the roof of the net.
Stunned into action, Ajax had several chances to level but it was not until seven minutes from time that they managed to do so when Sigthorsson's delightful bicycle kick from Jody Lukoki's cross ensured honours finished even
Sekou Cisse's first-half strike gave last year's Eredivisie runners-up Feyenoord a narrow 1-0 victory in their opening match of the season at FC Utrecht.
Ronald Koeman's side finished six points behind champions Ajax last year and they got their campaign off to the right start this afternoon when Ivory Coast international Cisse headed home in the 39th minute, with the goal standing despite a suspicion of offside in the build-up.
Lex Immers saw his shot cleared off the line just after the interval by Mike van der Hoorn as Feyenoord continued to threaten while Ruben Schaken went through one-on-one but Utrecht goalkeeper Robbin Ruiter made a fantastic save in injury time to keep the deficit to just one goal.
Marco van Basten made a forgettable start to life as Heerenveen coach after they were beaten 2-0 at home to NEC Nijmegen.
Melvin Platje opened the scoring in the 21st minute, the striker heading in off the underside of the crossbar following Navarone Foor's inch-perfect cross from the right wing.
NEC then doubled their lead 14 minutes later when Pavel Cmovs evaded the offside trap to head Ryan Koolwijk's long ball over the top past Heerenveen goalkeeper Kristoffer Nordfeldt.
Nacer Chadli and Dusan Tadic each bagged a brace as FC Twente began their season in blistering style with a 4-1 win over FC Groningen.
Steve McClaren's men did not look back after Chadli fired into the top corner on the half-hour mark before the Belgian turned provider three minutes later for Tadic, who finished from close range.
The two goalscorers combined again with Chadli striking low into the net nine minutes after the interval before Tadic sealed the rout with a vicious shot into the top corner in the 71st minute.
And although Leandro Bacuna pulled a goal back for Groningen after Genero Zeefuik's cut back seven minutes from time, it was too little, too late.
Jonathan Reis' 73rd minute free-kick rescued a 2-2 draw for Vitesse at home to ADO Den Haag.
Despite being the stronger team in a goalless first half, the hosts fell behind when Tjaronn Chery hammered home from 30 yards in the 53rd minute. The lead lasted less than a minute, though, as Wilfried Bony levelled matters from close range.
The topsy-turvy nature of the encounter continued when Danny Holla finished in the area from Rydell Poepon's pass in the 57th minute but Reis guaranteed Vitesse a share of the spoils with his set-piece from just outside the area.