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Preview: VVV-Venlo vs. Sparta Rotterdam - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Tuesday's Eredivisie clash between VVV-Venlo and Sparta Rotterdam, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

VVV-Venlo and Sparta Rotterdam square off in the Eredivisie on Tuesday evening with just two points separating the clubs in the standings.

The visitors sit six points ahead of the relegation zone, a marginal advantage over opposition who have suffered five straight league defeats.


Match preview

Henk Fraser, now in charge of Sparta Rotterdam, pictured in 2017© Reuters

In reaching the KNVB Beker semi-finals, VVV-Venlo have been able to put a positive spin on what has been a season battling to remain above the bottom three.

However, now that they have been eliminated from the cup, Hans de Koning must address the increasing issues which are emerging with his team.

VVV-Venlo have suffered six successive defeats against top-flight opposition, their only victory in seven matches coming against second-tier NEC after extra time.

As many as 23 goals have been conceded during those fixtures, six of which came in the demoralising defeat at the hands of Feyenoord on Saturday.

Remaining just four points above 16th-placed Willem II, the Yellow Black Army are under pressure to get back on track against a team in Sparta who have also lost their way.

While Henk Fraser's side claimed a point in their last outing, it came against bottom-of-the-table Emmen, who equalised through a last-minute penalty.

Come the end of the season, it may prove to be an important result, but Fraser knows that he needs to end an eight-match winless streak as soon as possible.

The biggest plus for Fraser and his squad is the established big three of Ajax, PSV Eindhoven and Feyenoord not featuring in their closing 10 fixtures.

Nevertheless, there is no room for complacency, particularly when defeat on Tuesday will see them drop down to 14th place.

VVV-Venlo Eredivisie form:
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L

VVV-Venlo form (all competitions):
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L

Sparta Rotterdam Eredivisie form:
  • D
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • D


Team News

De Koning will inevitably make alterations to his Venlo XI with one of Arjan Swinkels or Christian Kum likely to return to the team.

Gus Hupperts could be handed a start on the left flank, while Simon Janssen may replace Meritan Shabani in midfield.

The extra day of recovery may encourage Fraser to stick with the Sparta XI from the draw with Emmen.

Deroy Duarte may be recalled if Fraser opts to use an extra creative player in midfield.

VVV-Venlo possible starting lineup:
Kirschbaum; Pachonik, Swinkels, Graca, Schafer; Post, Donis, Janssen; John, Arias, Hupperts

Sparta Rotterdam possible starting lineup:
Okoye; Abels, Vriends, Beugelsdijk, Meijers; Harroui, L.Duarte, Auassar, Burger; Thy, Engels


SM words green background

We say: VVV-Venlo 1-2 Sparta Rotterdam

While a draw against the worst side in the division was regarded as a disappointment, it was at least a step in the right direction for Sparta. With that in mind, we feel that the visitors will back themselves to claim maximum points on Tuesday night, potentially late on when the home side would settle for a point.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a draw or an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Draw/Away:data


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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Ajax28233286206672
2PSV EindhovenPSV29187464303461
3AZ AlkmaarAZ29187466382861
4Vitesse29175746281856
5Feyenoord29159558292954
6Groningen2913793533246
7FC UtrechtUtrecht28111074536943
8Heracles29116123543-839
9FC Twente29910104240237
10Heerenveen29910103940-137
11Sparta RotterdamSparta2997134046-634
12Fortuna SittardSittard29104154052-1234
13PEC Zwolle29711113846-832
14RKC WaalwijkRKC Waalwijk2968152744-1726
15Willem II2957173161-3022
16VVV-VenloVVV-Venlo2964193975-3622
17EmmenEmmen2949163058-2821
18ADO Den HaagADO Den Haag29210172264-4216

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