Feyenoord strengthen Dutch lead with win over challenger AZ

Dutch league leaders Feyenoord repelled an attack by AZ on the first position in the Eredivisie by beating rivals AZ 2-1 in Rotterdam on Saturday night.

In a hard battle in the fully filled De Kuip stadium, both teams made some tough challenges, but failed to create major chances for most of the first half. AZ came in front when Javairo Dilrosun headed in a corner by Jesper Karlsson in the 17th minute.

At the stroke of halftime, Feyenoord equalized. Former AZ player Alireza Jahanbakhsh headed in from a cross by another former AZ player Oussama Idrissi.

In the second half Feyenoord pushed AZ back and a goal by Santiago Gimenez was disallowed for offside. Then in the final minute, right-back Marcus Pedersen attempted a shot with his left foot and, deflected by Karlsson, it went in the AZ goal.

With the win in the top of the table clash, Feyenoord came on 49 points after 22 matches. AZ now are five points behind and can be passed on Sunday when Ajax (43) play at home against Sparta and PSV (42) go to FC Utrecht. ■

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