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Waalwijk logo
Eredivisie | Gameweek 28
Apr 4, 2024 at 7pm UK
Mandemakers Stadion

RKC Waalwijk
0 - 0
Almere City

Roemeratoe (39'), Seuntjens (60')

Barbet (48')

Preview: RKC Waalwijk vs. Almere City - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's Eredivisie clash between RKC Waalwijk and Almere City, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Aiming to move further clear of the bottom three in the Eredivisie table, RKC Waalwijk will welcome Almere City to the Mandemakers Stadion on Thursday.

The hosts have moved a single point above the drop zone thanks to a positive run of results in recent weeks, while their visitors sit 12th in the midst of a winless run but remain eight points better off.

Match preview

Vitesse coach Henk Fraser gestures on November 23, 2017© Reuters

With seven games of the Eredivisie campaign left to play, RKC Waalwijk return to action on Thursday with the aim of further boosting their survival hopes, having moved out of the bottom three thanks to an improved run of results recently.

After 24 matches, Henk Fraser's side sat in a concerning position in the drop zone, as a run of 12 matches between early December and early March produced just one victory and culminated in three straight 1-0 defeats at the hands of Feyenoord, Fortuna Sittard and Go Ahead Eagles, leaving them on just 18 points.

They have since been able to add five crucial points to their tally in the last three attempts, firstly returning to winning ways with a 3-1 triumph over Vitesse on home turf with David Min, Reuven Niemeijer and Michiel Kramer getting on the scoresheet.

RKC then travelled to Excelsior and played out a 1-1 draw, before returning from the international break at home to Heerenveen on Saturday and again sharing the spoils in a draw with the same scoreline, having again pulled level after falling behind with Kevin Felida earning them a point 21 minutes from time.

While the upturn in form has seen them move a point ahead of Excelsior in the relegation playoff place and six clear of the automatic drop zone, RKC Waalwijk will know their work is far from done and will be desperate to extend their cushion and make it four league games unbeaten with a return to winning ways on Thursday.

In their way stand an Almere City side who will aim to move further away from the bottom end of the division and towards the top half with a return to winning ways of their own on Thursday.

After a dismal first half of the campaign, Almere City have enjoyed a notable improvement in recent months, moving clear of any threat of relegation at this stage having earned four wins and 18 points from their last 12 attempts since mid-December.

Following the latest of those triumphs, a 1-0 win away at PEC Zwolle in mid-February, De Zwarte Schapen now find themselves in the midst of both a five-match winless run and a four-game unbeaten streak, firstly falling to a 2-0 home defeat at the hands of second-placed Feyenoord before playing out a 2-2 draw away at Heracles.

Alex Pastoor's side have since shared points in three consecutive 1-1 draws heading into the weekend, going ahead on all three occasions as they were pegged back by Utrecht and Vitesse before returning from the international break at home to Volendam at the weekend and looking set to pick up a 1-0 victory through Adi Nalic, only for Robert Muhren to level the scores and force a share of the spoils four minutes into injury time.

Now sitting 12th in the Eredivisie after 27 games on 31 points, nine above the bottom three and three outside of the top half with seven matches to go, Almere City will bid to kickstart a climb back up the division on Thursday with an eighth league victory of the campaign.

RKC Waalwijk Eredivisie form:

Almere City Eredivisie form:

Team News

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

RKC Waalwijk will remain without Nouri El Harmazi on Thursday due to a long-term injury issue, while they will also be unable to call on key defender Aaron Meijers, who is suspended for an accumulation of yellow cards.

In their 4-2-3-1 shape, Michiel Kramer could return from the outset and lead the line after settling for a substitute appearance last time out, having netted a team-high tally of seven Eredivisie goals so far this season.

Elsewhere, Kevin Felida, who netted their goal in the 1-1 draw with Heerenveen at the weekend, should again join Yassin Oukili in the engine room, while Jurien Gaari could again feature alongside mainstay Dario Van den Buijs in the middle of the defence if Shawn Adewoye remains sidelined after missing the last game through injury.

Almere City could make several changes to their starting XI for Thursday's meeting, with defender Loic Mbe Soh and attacking midfielder Adi Nalic both vying to come in from the outset, with the latter having scored their goal in the 1-1 draw with Volendam on Sunday.

He should come in to support front man Thomas Robinet, who leads the squad with nine Eredivisie goals this term, while Alvaro Pena will hope to keep hold of his starting berth, possibly in a more defensive role in the engine room.

Peer Koopmeiners is a mainstay in the centre of their 3-5-2 shape, with Stije Resink also fighting to keep his spot, while Mbe Soh may join Theo Barbet and Sherel Floranus in a back three.

RKC Waalwijk possible starting lineup:
Vaessen; Lelieveld, Gaari, Van Den Buijs, Lutonda; Felida, Oukili; Margaret, Min, Seuntjens; Kramer

Almere City possible starting lineup:
Radlinger; Mbe Soh, Barbet, Floranus; Ritmeester Van De Kamp, Pena, Koopmeiners, Resink, Cathline; Nalic, Robinet

SM words green background

We say: RKC Waalwijk 1-1 Almere City

With both teams in the midst of runs of draws, and the visitors travelling in an improved streak with the aim of leaving with a result against higher opposition, we envisage a share of the points as the most likely outcome in Thursday's contest.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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Tables header RHS
2Almere CityAlmere City00000000
3AZ AlkmaarAZ00000000
5FC Twente00000000
6FC UtrechtUtrecht00000000
8Fortuna SittardSittard00000000
9Go Ahead Eagles00000000
11NAC BredaNAC Breda00000000
13PEC Zwolle00000000
14PSV EindhovenPSV00000000
15RKC WaalwijkRKC Waalwijk00000000
17Sparta RotterdamSparta00000000
18Willem II00000000

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