Rotterdam, March 23 (IANS) Feyenoord Rotterdam beat Dutch Eredivisie leaders PSV Eindhoven 2-1 with 21-year-old striker Anass Achahbar scoring both home goals at the Stadion Feijenoord here.
With senior striker Colin Kazim-Richards not fully fit and second-choice Mitchell te Vrede had made a bad impression in previous matches, the inclusion of Achahbar was still a little surprise, because his last starting opportunity was in 2012, reports Xinhua.
Following a disappointing loan spell at Arminia Bielefeld in the German second division in the 2013-2014 season, Feyenoord coach Fred Rutten gave Achahbar another chance this year.
In his fifth league match as a substitute, the forward became match winner last week against FC Dordrecht for Feyenoord’s 2-1 victory, followed by a starting place in the clash against PSV on Sunday.
After Adam Maher had hit the crossbar on behalf of PSV, Achahbar paid back the trust of his coach with two high quality goals.
He opened the scoring with a volley from a Terence Kongolo cross. After Memphis Depay missed the chance to equalise on behalf of PSV, he controlled a pass from Jean-Paul Boetius with his chest and scored again in the 63rd minute, four minutes after his opening goal.
Feyenoord coach Rutten refused to take the compliments for lining up Achahbar afterwards at the press conference. “In the end players line up themselves,” he said.
“Sometimes you hear that players need confidence from their coach, but I look at this the other way around. A player has to give confidence to a coach. That’s what Anass did in the past period.”
Eredivisie top scorer Depay narrowed the margin to one again with his 17th goal of the season, but he could not avoid the 2-1 loss against Feyenoord. It was the fourth defeat of PSV in 28 matches.
Also on Sunday, AFC Ajax booked a narrow and late win against ADO Den Haag 1-0. After a free-kick by Lasse Schone Davy Klaassen touched the ball, which went into the net through ADO player Xander Houtkoop.
Despite the loss, PSV are still on their way to the Dutch title with 70 points after 28 match rounds.
Ajax trail by eight points and Feyenoord are 16 points behind. AZ Alkmaar, which beat SC Cambuur 2-1, and Vitesse, which defeated Go Ahead Eagles 2-0 in Deventer, are so far the best of the rest.