Sparta Rotterdam welcome a wounded PSV to Het Kasteel for an Eredivisie showdown on Saturday evening (5.45pm kick-off, UK time).
Roger Schmidt’s title-chasing side enter this game on the back of a humbling 3-1 loss at home to AZ, while Sparta are buoyed following their return to winning ways at Fortuna Sittard’s expense last time out.
How to live stream Sparta Rotterdam vs PSV online:
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Where to watch Sparta Rotterdam vs PSV on TV:
- UK: N/A
- US: ESPN+
Scoreline prediction: Sparta Rotterdam 1-2 PSV
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Sparta Rotterdam vs PSV build-up, previous line-ups & injury news:
A disappointing 2-0 loss to city rivals Feyenoord was immediately put behind them when Sparta eked out a narrow 1-0 win at Fortuna Sittard in their last match, subsequently increasing their winning streak on the road to three matches. Sparta’s away last defeat came at PSV, a narrow 1-0 loss in late November, which is a contrast to what’s been happening at home. Henk Fraser’s side are seeking to end a two-match losing run and overall this season, they’ve managed just two wins. However, both of those triumphs came against sides in the bottom three (ADO Den Haag and FC Emmen).
Also desperate for a return to winning ways are PSV, who came into 2021 eyeing up champions and leaders Ajax, but across their first two matches since the winter break they’ve managed to pick up just one point. Frustratingly, the Eindhoven-based club threw away two points in Amsterdam, after going 2-0 up before 25 minutes were played. That was then followed by a humbling 3-1 loss at home to AZ. Away from the Philips Stadion, they’ve been struggling of late as well, accumulating just one win across their last five league outings.
- Sparta Rotterdam (vs Fortuna Sittard): Okoye; Abels, Heylen, Beugelsdijk, Pinto; Mijnans, Auassar, Harroui, Duarte; Engels, Thy.
- PSV (vs AZ): Mvogo; Dumfries, Teze, Boscagli, Max; Thomas, Rosario, Sangare, Ihattaren; Zahavi, Malen.
Tim Coremans (knee) is the only player missing for Sparta this weekend. Richard Ledezma and Maximiliano Romero, out with respective knee injuries, are long-term absentees for PSV while there are doubts over the involvement of Cody Gakpo and Mario Gotze. Meanwhile, on-loan Chelsea midfielder Marco van Ginkel, who came off the bench against AZ, is pushing for a start.
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Players to watch:
- Sparta Rotterdam: Coming into this game, PSV’s defence has been somewhat leaky; the Eindhoven-based club have gone six Eredivisie matches without registering a clean sheet, and they’ve shipped in five goals across their last two league outings. Sparta will be looking to capitalise on that and make amends for their recent struggles, and they’ve got someone in their ranks who can punish Schmidt’s men. By scoring last time out against Fortuna Sittard, the club’s leading marksman, Lennart Thy, ended a two-game drought. He’s now on nine for the season, which currently leaves him seven behind the current Golden Boot leader, VVV-Venlo forward Giorgos Giakoumakis, but in five previous league meetings against PSV, the 28-year-old German striker has failed to score past them.
- PSV: So much was naturally expected of 21-year-old Dutch forward Donyell Malen heading into this season. Since leaving Arsenal in 2017 he’s slowly forced his way into PSV’s starting XI and is now among their most dangerous players. A serious knee injury cut short what could have been a huge 2019/20 campaign, but he’s only four goals shy of the 11 he struck last season, though Malen has already played one game more. That said, the six-time Netherlands international has now gone three Eredivisie games without a goal. He last struck against Utrecht in early December and in PSV’s last meeting with Sparta, it was Malen who made the difference as they ran out 1-0 winners.
Eredivisie 2020/21 recent form:
- Sparta Rotterdam: WLWLW
- PSV: LDWWW
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