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Vitesse Arnhem - NEC Nijmegen (2-2)
KPN Eredivisie, 02 May 2004
Stadium : Stadion Gelredome
Attendance : 21.640


There are only three matches left and Vitesse is in serious trouble. The last team will go down to the second division, while number 16 and 17 have to play play-off matches in order to try to stay in the Eredivisie.

14 NEC 32
15 ADO Den Haag 28
16 FC Zwolle 25
17 Vitesse 24
18 FC Volendam 23

Vitesse was very ambitious for a few years and was the steady number 4 (after ajax, feyenoord and psv) in the Dutch league. They built a very big and expensive stadium (for Dutch standards) but now they are in financial trouble and it would be a disaster for them to go down to the second division.

NEC played in Europe this season (lost to Wisla Krakow in the first round of the UEFA Cup) which was the second time in the club's history. They will probably stay in the Eredivisie and they would love to see their ambitious rivals go down. It will be a though match for them because they didn't earn an away win against Vitesse for over 25 years.


It was a high security match so outside the stadium there were a lot of police horses and military police. Everything seemed quiet and under control. The 1200 NEC fans arrived by bus without any trouble I guess.


The stadium looked very nice and compact and we had great seats close to the pitch. The only thing missing in this futuristic stadium were the big videoscreens that you see in many stadia nowadays.
An hour and a half before kick-off there were already some Vitesse and NEC fans chanting. Most people arrived at their seats about 15 minutes before the match. There was a junior match and (very!) loud music the hour before kick-off. You couldn’t hear the fans whistling when their rivals entered the pitch and their pre-match chanting because of the music…


It was a typical derby match with a lot of passion and fighting spirit. The first half was nothing special but the second half was superb with lots of chances and 4 goals. Vitesse could have scored 2-0 and maybe 3-0 but in the end they should have been happy with their late equalizer.


The NEC fans, of course, had some songs about the Gouden Gids Divisie (Dutch 2nd league) and they sang that this was the last time that they had to visit the Gelredome.

The Vitesse fans were especially heard after both goals. The Gelredome sound system was finally used in a positive way because after both goals the place went mental on music of Pennywise – Bro Hymn Tribute. Great goal tune music!!


The 1200 NEC fans were behind a glass wall and a line of stewards and some empty seats. When the match started they were provoked by Vitesse fans who were hitting the glass wall and I saw one of the seats flying to the away section. It was getting nasty and therefore the stewards were immediately replaced by fully armed military police.

After the first goal of NEC I was surprised to see some people right next to me jump up and celebrate the goal. There were at least 20 people in my section celebrating the NEC equalizer. After the 1-2 it wasn’t any different and then I saw some crowd trouble on the opposite stand of ours. I guess the celebrating of the NEC fans in the home sections wasn’t appreciated.

After the match I was waiting in my car at the main intersection right next to the stadium when the NEC busses left the ground. There were Vitesse fans all over and police with dogs, horses… a few hundred hooligans were waiting at the intersection to say goodbye to the visitors from Nijmegen. From what I could see all busses and their escorts (police, ambulances, military police…) reached the highway safely…


1 point won’t be enough for Vitesse. Only a miracle can save them from the play-offs or worse…relegation…
NEC still has the chance to drop Vitesse off the cliff, because next week they face bottom table FC Volendam.

14 NEC 33
15 ADO Den Haag 31
16 Vitesse 25
17 FC Zwolle 25
18 FC Volendam 23


Vitesse – NEC 2-2 (0-0)

’54 Hofs 1-0
’76 Hersi 1-1
’84 Hersi 1-2
’90 Hofs 2-2

Vitesse : Jevric, Cornelisse, Konterman, Knol, Ilic, Rankovic, Hofs (Dingsdag/91), Jansen, Schaars, (Rojer/85), Amoah, Rink

N.E.C. : Genternaar, Zonneveld (Tumba/73), Wielaert, Wisgerhof, Ebbinge, Barreto, v.d.Doelen, Heije, Simr (Hersi/74), Niedzielan (Schuurman/86), Demouge


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Report added : 02 May 2004
Report by : Jordy
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