Forget the Eredivisie league table, Feyenoord are outperforming Ajax

Next Sunday at 12.30 (CET) the first “Klassieker” of the 2012/2013 season will take place in Rotterdam when Feyenoord host Ajax. Feyenoord had their best season for 11 years last term when they finished as Eredivisie runners-up behind Ajax and, despite playing six of their first nine matches away from home, Feyenoord have almost doubled the points they achieved last term against the same nine opponents to date.

Feyenoord have taken eight points more than last season from those nine opponents – the result against PEC Zwolle is compared to De Graafschap last term. This increase in points is the best in the Eredivisie ahead of FC Twente’s six extra points gained. However, Feyenoord beat Ajax 4-2 in last season’s match in De Kuip as the video above shows and they will need to repeat this to remain on +8 in comparison to the same fixtures in 2011/2012.

Ajax currently have the same number of points as Feyenoord (17) but they took 18 from the nine matches played so far last term. That means that Feyenoord, who finished six points behind Ajax last season, have a net profit of nine points on their rivals in comparison to the matches played in 2011/2012. If this state of affairs continues, Feyenoord must be regarded as potential champions even though they have four clubs currently ahead of them.

In terms of our other model, the expected points model, only four clubs have underperformed the bookmakers’ odds this season more than Ajax. Ajax have 2.16 points fewer than the odds on their nine matches suggested. Roda JC Kerkrade, NAC Breda, VVV-Venlo and AZ are the only clubs more in the red on what was expected than last season’s champions.

On the positive side, Vitesse (+6.31), FC Twente (+4.01) and FC Utrecht (+3.87) all have more points than the odds makers thought they would have after nine matches. Second placed PSV are absolutely bang on expectations with 21 points.

Over the next week or so I will concentrate on Ajax and Feyenoord on these pages as we move towards the first “Klassieker” of the season.

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