By Berend Scholten
SC Heerenveen claimed the final UEFA Cup berth in the Dutch First Division after achieving victory at FC Groningen, while nearest rivals SBV Vitesse lost against AFC Ajax.
Daniel Berg Hestad headed in Ugur Yildirim’s cross to put Heerenveen ahead in the 27th minute of the northern derby before Klaas Jan Huntelaar doubled the scoreline with a header 15 minutes into the second period. Danny Buijs scored a consolation for the home side on 75 minutes. However, the fight for fifth spot and the final European berth will not go down to the last game of the season next weekend, after Vitesse were defeated 2-0 at home by Ajax through goals from Zdenek Grygera and Rafael van der Vaart, while Matthew Amoah missed a penalty for Vitesse.
Eredivisie champions PSV Eindhoven won their 27th match of the season despite being pegged back twice by UEFA Cup qualifiers Feyenoord. Dirk Kuijt cancelled out efforts from Ibrahim Afellay and Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink to bring his season's total to 26 goals, before PSV captain Mark van Bommel brought his side the lead for the third time on 52 minutes - a minute after Kuijt’s second equaliser. Afellay sealed the points for Guus Hiddink’s side with his second of the game 19 minutes from time.
UEFA Cup qualifiers AZ Alkmaar’s poor form, which has seen them take just four points from their last six games, continued with a 3-0 defeat at FC Twente. Three goals in the final 35 minutes from Jason Culina, Blaise N’Kufo and Daniel Majstorovic earned Twente the three points that moved Rini Coolen’s side above Vitesse into sixth place.
At the bottom, RBC Roosedaal guaranteed they would not finish in the automatic relegation place after Jesper Håkansson scored twice in a 3-1 triumph against Roda JC. The second relegation play-off place, however, remains undecided after De Graafschap and FC Den Bosch lost games at NEC Nijmengen and RKC Waalwijk respectively. Both sides are now level at the bottom on 19 points with the relegation berths now being decided in the final games of the season next weekend.
Elsewhere, ADO Den Haag won 6-2 against NAC Breda, while FC Utrecht lost 3-0 at home against Dutch Cup finalists Willem II, for whom Martijn Reuser scored twice after Tom Caluwe had broken the deadlock.
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